A Message from Before Beyond

“My husband and I have only been married 5 years, I need more time to show him how much I truly

love him. I want my lifetime with him. I want the fighting, and loving. He has stayed by me though

everything, even when it gets so frustrating I could give up. Though we both are frustrated by my

disease, he has never let that break us. He won't give up on me. He has given up so much to make me

happy and to do what is right for me, never thinking how it's going to affect him first. He would do

anything for me, and this I know because he has done everything for me. I have never been so in love

with anyone else in my life. He is the only one that makes me whole. He is always loving me, and for that

I love him.”


Those words were written by Megan, in October of 2010.  At the time, she was incredibly sick.  An oxygen machine had sat in our living room, loudly buzzing away 24/7 for about a year so far.  More often than not, she wasn’t home, she was in the hospital.  I would mix and prepare her aerosol treatments for her, bring her her pills, wash her clothes, cook dinner, and go to work.  I’d lift her into and out of the tub, and wash her hair for her.  If we did leave the house, I would ensure she had everything she needed, including a wheelchair.  

It took a village, make no mistake.  Her parents were there for her, for us, whenever she needed.  I couldn’t be there at all hours.  I had to stay in a dead-end job, with a 2 hour commute each way, just so we could keep our insurance.  Even when I would receive offers from nearby and more desirable employers, I couldn’t entertain them, because the 90 day wait for healthcare would have bankrupted us in medical bills.  Her parents certainly were focused on her well-being, and Shelby’s, and more than made up for the times that I couldn’t be there.  

It was a thankless job...or so I thought.


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It Must Have Superpowers

Did you ever feel so consumed by your own grief that you have forgotten that others grieve too?  That they grieve not only for the loss of your spouse, who may have been a friend to them, but possibly they grieve also for other people that you may know absolutely nothing about?  Do you find that during this time of all consuming grief, you have forgotten that other people have suffered loss too?

Recently that realization has hit me hard.  

For the last 19 months I have been consumed by my own grief and I didn't have room to consider the possibility that anyone else in my life could be carrying around a similar, agonizing grief from their own past.  That wasn't on my radar at all.  Lately though ... lately my eyes have opened a bit to the world around me as I have slowly started to awaken from my drugged slumber (figuratively drugged, not literally), and I have been surprised to discover that others - not random strangers but actual people who are a part of my life - have suffered their own agonizing losses that I knew nothing about.  How could I have not known??

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What if...

Do our souls live on when the body dies? It’s one of the biggest questions widowed people will be faced with on their journey… and anyone who has been faced with death. We all find our own answers in our own ways to this. For some of us, it is our belief in a religion or faith. For others, it is confirmation from a medium who brings us clear signs of our loved ones. It may come to us directly through signs and synchronicities. For me, it was a very strong feeling, and direct messages from my fiance after he died. They were simple things in the weeks after his sudden death… like “go eat something”. He was gently nudging me along, reminding me I didn’t need to figure it all out, I just needed to take a deep breath and take care of myself today.

Months later, those feelings and messages from him became further confirmed by my first reading with a medium. She told me things that she could have never known. Things only he could have told me. It was then that I was certain, the feelings and messages I was getting were not my imagination… but were in fact him. It was then that I was certain of the answer that our souls do live on when our bodies die - and his was very much well, happy, and full of sarcastic humor as always.

I’ve had a dozen or so readings since then, and it never ceases to confirm for me that belief, and strengthen that connection I have to him. But there is still that lack of scientific evidence about all of this that leaves the entire subject feeling a bit taboo for most of us. A bit like we have to be careful who we talk about it with. Understandably, a lack of scientific proof still creates many skeptics. Had I not had the experiences I’ve had, I wouldn’t believe in any of it either. This is why I am feeling completely in awe of the presentation I just witnessed today. 

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Counting Life

Yesterday was my 3 month anniversary.

3 months ago yesterday, 

I chose love again. 

3 months ago yesterday,

I let love in. 

3 months ago yesterday,

I faced the terror

that I could very well 

lose this person that I love

all over again,

and I decided

that loving him was worth 

that pain. 

3 months ago 


I began my next 

great love story.

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In My Heart

When this posts I will be in England with my musician boyfriend. We didn’t go last year…it’s just so darned pricey, getting all the way over there from Hawaii. But his mom is sick. Cancer. So we are going. 


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Triangles and Shapes and Pillows~

My fingers lightly grazed your arm,

Hairs tickling sensitive tips

They slid along your shoulders,

Feeling their breadth and strength.

My hips tucked themselves into yours,

As we slept.

Your arm curled behind your back

To pull me more snugly into you.

Our bodies tucked and curved into one another, one passion filled night after another.

Toes touching as we drifted to sleep. Or pinkie fingers twined together.  Hands clasped.

We always touched as we nodded off into dreams.

How long ago is forever?

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I'm an ADULT!

imadult.pngAs I write this, Sarah is cruising at 30,000 feet over Indiana.  She’s en-route to Chicago, then Phoenix to spend 6 days with Drew’s mother at a conference.  We woke up early this morning to get her to the airport, then for me to get Shelby to school and myself on to work.

For the next week, I’m back to basics.  I’m effectively a “single father” in the sense that it’s my sole responsibility to make sure Shelby is taken care of, the clothes are washed, the lawn is mowed, and the bills are paid.  Sarah has been here for almost 2 years now, and as time has progressed, her and I have become more and more of a team.  

I won’t lie, having Sarah making sure that I knew when Shelby’s after-school activities were, or making sure that we had some food pulled out of the freezer for the next few days is nice in more ways than one.  It’s funny, really.  We have become so “in-tune” that she doesn’t trust me to be able to take care of myself and Shelby for a few days on my own.


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An Honest Love Letter: Saint-Onge style

I was scrolling through my personal blog recently, because I like reading what I wrote while Ben was still alive. Re-reading my words allows me to remember certain days with clarity.  For a moment I can close my eyes and feel myself back in my real life when Ben was alive.  And even though those days were terrible for him (pain, chemo, radiation, more pain), the saddest day with Ben in my life was still better than any one day could ever be without him.

Towards the end of summer in 2015 I was getting desperate.  I knew that it was only a matter of time before Ben died, but he made it clear that type of thinking / talking was off limits. That meant we didn't get to discuss anything about what life would look like without him.  I didn't get to tell him that we would remember him, and honour him, and talk about him.  I didn't get to tell him that he would always be my number 1, and that I would miss him every single second for the rest of my life.  I didn't get to tell him that my heart would break and would never fully heal, that scars would remain that would remind me constantly of a life I would no longer have.  

So I wrote him this love letter, in a way that we would normally banter back and forth.  In a way I hoped wouldn't scare him.  In a way I hoped would let him know the depth of my love and how deeply I would miss his presence when he was gone.

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Fear & Appreciation

For whatever reason, today, I have this fear that something horrible is going to happen, or that something horrible IS happening that I don’t know about. It may be all the horrible stuff going on with hurricanes and now earthquakes… the edginess that all of that upheaval in so many people’s lives. The anxiety that I had just a few weeks ago when a friend of mine was caught in the midst of hurricane Harvey. It’s all reminding me how fragile everything is… of how stability and security are really just illusions of safety.

I went over to a nearby coffee shop to sit down and to some computer work this morning, when the feeling hit. This hasn’t happened to me many times really, not in this way, but when it does, I can’t help but want to panic. Because it almost feels like a knowing. Like you know how in Star Wars, Yoda just knows when there is a disturbance in the Force? How he feels when someone dies even though he wasn’t even there to see it? Yeah, it’s the Force feeling. 

It feels like an instant fear that somehow this ordinary day is not in fact so ordinary. That something just shifted and I don’t know what. I’ve yet to have this feeling actually connect to something… so I guess I kind of think of it now like my brain short circuits or has some kind of spasm where there is this one little misfiring neuron that thinks today is disaster day. Like that synapse in my brain that was triggered in the moment I got the phone call that Drew was in an accident and already dead, sometimes has some sort of tremor of aftershock. And then, out of nowhere, I feel like today, right at this moment, something bad is happening to Mike, and I don’t know it yet.

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This new version of life. 

This life that exists in the now. 

The one where my husband,

is no longer my husband,

by law. 

Because he is dead.

And you can't be married 

to a dead person.

By law.  

You might still FEEL married,

like I did, 

for almost 4 years, 

after his death. 

You might feel as if even looking 

at another man

is cheating, 

and it feels wrong 

and awful,

and you feel like a terrible wife,

like I did. 



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