One of the biggest, most ever-nagging situations that has persisted following my entrance into widowhood, has been the loss of security.

And when I say security, I mean it in a variety of ways.

There is actual security.

Bret was a big, scary, foreboding fellow who rarely skipped a day at the gym. (We even owned a gym at one point.)

We had a storage shed robbed, on a property we owned once, as well as our place of business – but that had been an inside job. I had, however, never experienced a home burglary until two years ago.

If those thieves would have ever caught Bret coming in and out of the house they would have passed over this place entirely, which I can almost guarantee.  He would have absolutely done something too, as the thieves were people who we knew. It’s probably good he wasn’t here for that as I am sure he would have wound up in jail with a few assault charges.

One of the worst things that remains from something like a robbery is the constant worry of it happening again.

As if I need another thing to worry about…

Then there is financial security.

I have brutally struggled financially since Bret died. It hasn’t let up once.

We went from two people earning to just me. And the job market hasn’t exactly been kind to me.

All the lines of credit that we opened to fund our business, adjusted to their more unreasonable APRs in the months following his departure.

So, half the income-earning power and about fifteen times the debt is what I was left with.

I have had help – I would be remiss to leave that out. But no matter how thankful I am, help is not consistent, yet the struggles are.

Don’t even get me started about thinking of the future or any possible “retirement.”

So, we can add “future security” to the list as well.

I trusted Bret – I trusted our partnership – to help eke out a future for me. For us.

The future I had in mind flatlined the moment he took his last breath

I realize that there is nothing guaranteed for anyone, widowed or not, but becoming abruptly widowed from a spouse who didn’t have a will, or any life insurance, or anything in place for me and our daughter, really left me high and dry.

And nearly six years later, I haven’t bounced back at all.

There have certainly been highs. There have been wins.

And maybe the lesson here is for me to not worry about the future, but rather the moment that exists right here, right now.

If that’s the case, I am happy to keep being mindful of the present moment; after all, NOW is GOOD.

But I won’t lie – it feels like I’m bobbing up and down in some vast, scary sea, with no life preserver. And I’m getting tired, folks. So tired.

I am fueled to keep swimming – or dog paddling, as is more accurate for me – by the determination to stick around for my kids, particularly my minor child who would be an orphan if I were to succumb to the cold, tumultuous depths surrounding me.

I also just outright refuse to be taken down by this.

The wins that I mentioned before have become so much more meaningful to me now, knowing that I accomplished such things when at the absolute lowest point in my life.

Those wins bolster me for long enough to maybe get a breath or two until the next wave hits.

But believe me when I say, I am ready for some dry land.

I am ready for safety and security and to feel like I am not about to be pulled under.

Until that time though, I will just have to keep going.

And I will never stop hoping.


Images via Provident Insurance (top) and
Facebook (bottom). 


Layla Beth Munk is a blogger & author who was thrust into this widowhood journey abruptly and tragically on February 11, 2018. Her husband of 12 years had ended his pain once and for all. She soon made the decision that she would not let his final decision define the rest of her life or their daughter’s life, so with her sense of humor at the helm, she started writing about her newfound station in life. Grief waves still get to her, and probably always will, but with the help of her fellow widows as well as friends and family, she has been able to realize her dream of becoming a published author! Layla is so grateful to Hope For Widows Foundation for providing this level of support to her, and so many others! Layla has two amazing children, one who is grown and one who is almost grown. She lives in eastern Oregon and has a wellness & beauty background. Layla enjoys writing poetry, watching anime, and homeschooling her daughter.

Her blog can be found at and her debut novella, 24 Hours in Vegas, is available on Amazon.