Tomorrow marks seven years since my first husband was rear-ended and killed. As I tried to think of what I wanted to write and how I should share it, my gaze kept returning to my piano.

For James' funeral, I put a ton of pressure on myself to play and sing Garth Brooks' song "The Dance," as the lyrics helped me express what I often couldn't in my own broken words. You know the tune: "And now I'm glad I didn't know / the way it all would end / the way it all would go / My life is better left to chance / I could've missed the pain / but I'd have had to miss the dance." I've never regretted that performance, even though the unintended consequence was not wanting to play ever again.

After a few years, I did try to sit on that hard bench and open up some old favorite sheets. But...it didn't last long. Until this summer. 
As you can see from the picture on the left, I now have an accompanist with me: my baby daughter, Ruthie. She smiles and gasps with glee while banging on the keys. It's her favorite thing, and we do it every day. Sometimes three times a day. It all started as an attempt to stop her crying one afternoon and just try something new.

It was a moment where the broken pieces of my life as a widow shifted and made a new pattern. New life opened a door I thought I had closed.

Friends, life is a kaleidoscope: a collection of fragments waiting to create newness. Keep your heart open today and always.



Betty Anne Seawright Hays
08/15/2016 5:54pm

I just read Amazon's sample from Then and Now. I was 24 when my 25 year old Navy jet pilot husband crashed after being launched from a carrier. All the things people said to you, they said to me. Thanks for so beautifully expressing the pain. I am glad to find you and want to read the book. Am now 82 and widowed again, but the first time is still fresh too.

12/08/2016 7:26am

Thanks for this blog for updating about kaleidoscope living after 7 years keep doing in the same way . Really very helpful and useful for all mainly updating and giving us a lot of better and updates.

02/05/2017 12:59am

Your life was full of really awful things! You're so strong if you had opened your heart for a new opportunities!

I'm very happy that you've come into new life! And it's good that you're really happy now!

What consequences can you make after this seven years? Life becomes harder for me.

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