Wednesday, March 28, 2012

A much needed eye opener

I just finished reading Signs of Life by Natalie Taylor for my online book club From Left to Write.  It was an easy read which was nice since I have a newborn at home.  I really enjoyed reading it and looked forward to Lily's nursing sessions so I could actually get to read it.  The book is a memoir about a 24 year old woman, Natalie, in her 5th month of pregnancy whose husband suddenly and unexpectedly dies.  It really gave me a new appreciation for all that I have.  I realize now how easily a person can lose everything and how I need to stop taking my husband and life for granted.

So many women, myself included, get into the habit of complaining about our husbands and all the things they do or don't do.  He forgot this, he didn't do that, he said such-and-such.  When I stop and think about it though, I can't imagine what I would do without my husband, Justin.  I depend on him for so much in my life.  For everything from finances to emotional support.  Even all the little things, like taking the trash and recycling to the curb on trash day, add up.  We are partners in everything we do and I depend on him every moment of every day.  We have our disagreements, but I know at the end of every day he has my back.

Something she didn't touch on in the book at all, but that I was super curious about, is her finances.  She never mentions how losing her husband's income affected her.  I would think, especially expecting her first child, that it would have been a big deal.  Losing Justin would devastate me in a number of ways, one of which would be financially.  His income IS what we live on.  My income covers our older children's daytime care expenses with a very small amount left over.  Thinking of this made me realize how desperately we need to update our life insurance policies.  When we got the policies over 10 years ago we had no children and were barely starting out in our adult lives.  Another important topic this book made me think about was guardianship of my kids if something were to happen to Justin AND I.  About a month ago we spoke with our accountant about the need to set up a will and other papers that would say what would happen to our children and money if something happened to us.  I REALLY need to get on this!

I'm so glad I chose to participate this month and read Signs of Life.  It was really an eye opener for me!

During the fifth month of her pregnancy of her first child Natalie Taylor is devastated by the sudden death of her husband. Her journey with grief is chronicled in the memoir Signs of Life. Join From Left to Write on March 29 as we discuss Signs of Life by Natalie Taylor. As a member of From Left to Write, I received a copy of the book. All opinions are my own.


  1. This book looks interesting, I may have to give it a try! I think women who are faced with such a situation, having children without the financial support of a man, get a job and support the children themselves. When Debra's husband left her she had a 2 year old and a 4 year old to support, so she got herself a job and relied on family and any assistance with childcare she could find and has worked her way up into a nice paying job, she owns her own home and she's never received child support. When faced with such a reality, women are much stronger and capable than they often give themselves credit for. I've watched many women go through that type of situation and one thing that always comes from it is that women always need to be able to take care of themselves if they find themselves on their own without a spouse. Though you never want to plan for those types of things to happen, it's always smarter to know that if something does happen, you can support yourself, with the help of course of those that love you.

  2. I wondered about Natalie's finances as well, as our family would have to move in with my parents or in-laws if something ever happened to my husband.

  3. I know exactly what you mean. We have so much to update, too... and oh my husband is someone I count on. I joke about how he's the dish washer and the puke cleaner and the garbage taker outer, but it's so much more than that....

  4. I found myself wondering about their finances as well! The emotional stress would be debilitating enough, I cannot imagine the stress of having to financially provide for my family as a single mom. Our life insurance policies are expensive, but well worth it!


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