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March 01, 2011


Lori A.

God Bless anyone else could know "when" was best for you other than you, I don't know.

Debbie Schroeder

Wow-this was not part of the "crafting" information I was in search of today but how blessed was I to be able to read your sad yet positive story. You have given me a new perspective on my life today and for that I want to thank you. I hope that your day was ok-and I am guessing you made sure it was :-) You are an inspiration-a HUGE inspiration-to those of us who are so weak. Thank you for sharing your story. God Bless YOU.


Hi Julie, I just have one question for is the LORD. Leading you with regard to your wedding ring? You and the LORD can figure out the perfect time for this to happen. My prayer is that you would not receive judgement, but would instead receive comfort and encouragement from God's people. You grieve as long as you need to - don't allow anyone to dictate your timetable! The Lord will show you when and what to do!!!! Love and Blessings!! Gabrielle

Julie (Joypup on SCS)

Such an important decision, Julie -- and one that only you can make. You continue to amaze and inspire me in how you are handling this and how much you are sharing here.

May your path be filled with Light and God's eternal love as you move through this time and He shows you the next steps in your path.

Glenda J

Sending you {{{hugs}}} during this difficult time.

Orla Carey

Julie - you'r an inspiration. Russ is, I'm sure, terribly proud of you. Wear your ring or not, sometimes or always - whatever you want - it's what's in your heart that counts


I understand completely. It took me a year or so to take mine off. Once in a while I still wear it but because I love the set. Maybe one day I will get the diamonds reset into another ring.

Gillian Westlake

I have been receiving updates from your site for a while and followed what has been happening over the past months. Folk have a way of sticking their noses in, when it has got nothing to do with them. You know what you feel and what is right or wrong. Hats off to you, many hugs and prayers from across the miles in the UK!


julie your counselor pissed me off. i'm sorry but that person has no right to question why you are or are not wearing your ring. i hope you took it off because you were ready and not because someone else made you think about it.

Michelle Arthur

I have never been in your shoes and hope that if I ever have to be, that it will be years and years from now. That said, I do not see how others that are not in your shoes can tell you what is right for you. There is no timetable on grief and everyone handles things differently. I think it is great that you are able to express your feelings and I know that getting those feelings out will help you work things out. But do what you feel is right in your heart --- that can never be wrong.


I am glad you have someone to talk to, but don't forget that you have to do things on your time table and not one that anyone else feels is right, if you still feel like you want to wear the ring then go for it. But if you feel it is time to take it off, I feel that you shouldn't need anyone else's approval on that either. I just want to make sure your not being pushed into things that your not ready for. Sending you hugs


Dear Julie - I am continuously amazed at your strength. I admire your committment to yourself, your boys and Russ. Taking off your ring is the right thing to do if you think it is. I agree with you that this is the right time. I continue to pray for you and your boys.

(and I love the posts of how well you are managing everything on your own, with your house, your boys, your go girl!! Keep it up!)

Kim Kowal

Julie, God is with you always!! Big hugs to you as you go about these days. You are so extremely strong and you have such a good faith, I know you'll be ok!! Prayers for you and the boys!! HUGS!! Kim

Georgie in Somerset

I hope and pray that you will come to have peace in your heart. Don't give yourself a hard time. Take care xxx

Mary Hansen

I truly believe that God will send you and your boys another man to guide you through life. He will not take away from Russ's legacy, but will add to you and your boy's lives. You will never be required to silence Russ's memory, but he will be able to add to your family's values and build the family you always dreamed of.


Julie-I lost my husband over 18 years ago at age 44 and there hasn't been a day gone by that I haven't thought about him. i re-married 3 years later but he's in my heart forever. I so understand some of what you're going thru. I keep you and your family in my prayers daily.


Thank you for sharing your journey. I agree that more of us need to talk about our grief, so it isn't such a "hidden and therefore forbidden" thing. You are amazing, and I am glad you are doing things when YOU are ready and not when other people think you should be. You are in my prayers.

Jen Arkfeld

Just remember - Russ is gone, but not forgotten! Your rings are a symbol of your love. A SYMBOL! Do what you need to with them - whether you wear them on the other hand or on a chain around your neck. And remember - if He brings you to it, He'll bring you through it. Stay strong! Russ is surely proud of you.


Don't let anyone tell you when you're ready and when you're not... you'll know yourself when and if it's right. You're doing a fantastic job with everything as it is, don't expect so much of yourself.

Becky Thomas

It has been two years since I lost Jeff and I just moved the ring to the other hand. May wear it there for a long time and that is ok.

Hugs - Becky T

Cheryl Swanson

Julie, After I lost my husband of 23 years and I was only 40, I never expected to date or see anyone. But as we know God has a plan for us all. He put a lovely man in my path and we were married a year later. I remember I even wore my husbands wedding ring on a chain for a very long time. It was about 9 months before I took my wedding ring off, so I understand your feelings. When our son was married I gave him his Fathers' wedding band to use in his ceremony. One day I plan to give my Grandaughter my wedding set.


Julie - Your messages tear at my heart. God bless and keep you as you work through your loss.

My mother wore her wedding ring for the 17 years she was widowed, and we only took it from her hand after she followed him to Heaven. A love so strong cannot simply be discarded like a piece of property.

You have our prayers, and such admiration for the strength of character you maintain.


Dear Julie
How brave and couragious you are and together with your Boys have managed to move forward with your life.
You do what is right for YOU and no one can tell you what that is. Its your inner self that will guide you. YOu have managed to come this far and you will continue to do this one day at a time.My heart and prayers go out to you and your Family.
You are amazing.
Best Wishes Joyce from South Africa.

Diane L

Go with your heart Julie! You are an inspiration to us all,God will lead you in the right path! You and the boys are always in my thoughts and prayers!
Russ is watching over you and he's ok I'm sure,with all the decisions you make!


Julie, as a daughter of God, the truth is, you know that our relationships are meant to last beyond the grave. You can be a family forever and you can have Russ forever. If you'd like to know more you can ask me privately. It does not mean you can't go on to another relationship in this life, nor does it mean that your earthy marriage means any less to you. But I KNOW with all or the conviction of my heart that Families CAN BE Forever.


Julie, I said a special prayer for you tonight that God leads your heart in whatever direction he sees fit for you and your boys. Trust his guidance and do what you feel is best. You don't need to answer to anyone, only Him. You are in my thoughts and prayers.


Julie you are an awesome person! Look back with love and memory...reach to the future with hope and faith for a bright new life. You are in my thoughts!


I came across your blog again after being absent for awhile... I've read what I could to update myself on you and your life. I'm sorry to hear that you lost your husband. Even tho I haven't lost my husband I did loose my mother only 14 days and 2 hours from the time she was told she had Pancreatic Cancer...I didn't have time to internalize it at all.

YOU are the only one who can make the decisions that you are making. you don't owe anyone any explanation. My Heart and Love go out to you.


Julie, I'm so sorry for your loss. My dad died 8 years ago & my mom will never ever move on. She never saw a therapist......she has no family except me & my kids......she has no friends.....she will never heal because she doesn't try to. You are doing great!


Hugs Julie. I know you will do things as you need to and want to. Thanks so much for sharing your journey. I truly believe that you are helping others now and will be helping many in the future as they work through their own grief or that of someone near them. I hope those around you can find a way to be supportive of you in every way you need.


Julie, Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings with us. I know your are helping others as you do this. Your strength and courage lifts us all. I agree with others you need to do what is best for you. I too like the chain idea. Sending hugs and prayers your way.

Jocelan Perry

Julie I love reading you blog and having you share your new journey.I have been married for 49 years and I can't imagine taking my wedding ring off.I also believe we are married for time and all eternity.I admire your strength and faith this is a time when we really need the extra help to get through everyday,and know our time on earth is such a short time. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your boys.
Love Hugs Jocelan Perry

Linda Peterson

Julie, you are one of the most "got it together" people there is! Reading your ups and downs (which has been mostly ups) really keeps me going! I love the idea of wearing it on a chain, once you do not need to have it on your finger. It is amazing to hear some of the words that others write---sure are a lot of great people who read your blog.

Julie Carlisle

Been there and know exactly what you mean and how you feel. Just because you take your ring off does not make your feelings change automatically. It takes time for the feelings to catch up and that timing is different for everyone. Follow and hold on to your is the only thing we have that lasts forever. (((hugs)))


When my grandfather died, my grandmother took off her engagement ring, but left the wedding band on her left hand - evidently that is an older symbol of being a widow. She wore it until her dieing day - 30 years later. She once told me she'd gladly take my grandpa back, but there was no way she wanted to marry someone else. I didn't understand then, but I'm beginning to.


I have been following your transition to your new life avidly, as my husband passed away very suddenly, a few months before your Russ, I have three sons to your two. I still feel married, and am in no way ready to take off my ring. It is my security. I wear my husbands ring on a chain around my neck and use it a bit like a worry bead and rub it when I feel the need, a bit like twiddling your earrings.
Good luck with all you "firsts", you have had me in tears and laughter. Thank you so much for sharing your life and pain with us.
Love and Blessings to you and your boys.
Chris (New Zealand)


I have followed your blog for a long time and everytime I read your entries I am blessed by what you write. I have been married almost 35 years and I pray that if my husband is called home before me that I can hold on to my faith in God in the same way that you have. You have and continue to be an inspiration to me. Thank you for sharing your happiness, your pain, your sorrow and mainly thank you for being real. May God watch over and protect you and your boys. God Bless, Wendy

Evie C.

I like what Bren had to say... Wearing on a chain close to your heart would be a good tribute. Or since you' re such a crafty lady, maybe you could make a little project to encase your ring(s) as a nice remembrance. But take your time, and do it at your own speed. We're all pulling for you. One day the clouds will part, and the sunshine will burst through, with nothing but happy for ya! take care!

Linda Fitzgerald

Julie this is my first comment on your blog. I read it every posting, but you suddenly made me query my own knowledge of this today. I only just realised that at the time of her death, my mother was still wearing her rings after my father passed away 12 years previously. The things we don't notice! Mum has been gone for about 5 years now, and I didn't realise that she had kept them on until you mentioned it and I remembered that they were given to my sister (who she was living with at the time) after her passing. Thank you for reminding me of my own parent's love.

South Australia

linda panattoni

In my church, we marry for time and all eternity. However once a spouse passes on, it is okay to "re-marry". I think that it is your own personal choice to wear a ring or not. It is a symbol. It is okay to wear it as you remember your love of Russ. Russ will always be in your heart and I hope no one tries to take that away from you.


My MIL lost her husband too early also. She decided to wear it on her other hand, so he was always with her. Grieving takes time, and there is no right way. Whatever speaks to you is right. HUGS!


God will guide you! You are in my prayers.


I really admire your decision to take your ring off. Emotionally you have not let go and that is fine, it is too new and too raw.When we are married to the love of our life it is difficult to say goodbye and begin to heal and move on. I think it is so important to honor what you had by living your life to it's fullest. Russ would have wanted it that way. Love is not selfish. Re read Corinthians It is one step on a list of many others that you will have to face in the grieving and healing process. Death ends here not in eternity. Even God does not require us to remain alone if a mate dies.If down the road you should find someone you want to share your life with it in no way diminishes what you had with Russ. You are so young and have your entire life ahead of you. There is no shame in finding someone, life can become very lonely and it is very natural for you to want to re marry at some point. I so admire you for taking each step as it comes and deciding how to handle it. You go girl, you are doing a great job. the angels are dancing in heaven.


You'll know when you are ready to take it off, or switch it to the other hand. Healing takes time so let it run its course.


i don't think you are wrong........time and life and you will know when its time for you not because you feel everyone else thinks its
time for you to move on but because you feel
comfortable with it yourself.

Amanda P

Julie, hold on to the reality of what those rings signify to you. Yes, they show others in society you are married. But more importantly they are a symbol of the love Russ had for you. They symbolise the eternal love you shared. Wear them if they bring you comfort (maybe not on your ring finger) and remind you of the greatest love a man and a woman can share. Only you will know what is right for you.

Lynne Hurlburt

I know alot of women that never take off their wedding rings and that entirely is up to you, if you feel like wearing your rings you keep it on. Alot of women wear their husbands ring on a chain around their neck. So please do what ever you feel is right. Hugs n' Stuff, Lynne


Praying for you, Julie, as I have been for the past year. God bless you!


Julie...speaking from experience, you have to do what feels right for you when it feels right for you & no one else.

Sandi Street

Wow, that's really Real. I guess I never really had anyone make it so real before.

Lauren Y.

I feel like crying reading this, I don't know why.....
But again, Julie, you are a wonderful & strong lady! I admire you!


Julie, I have followed your blog for a while now and I marvel at your strength. I do not believe that there is a right way or a wrong way to deal with your loss. If there are days when you feel you need to wear your ring, then wear it. And if you don't need it, then don't. You can feel as married or not married as you want on any day. At some point, you might consider having your rings made into another special piece of jewelry that can be significant for you. My thoughts are with you as you take this journey.


There is no harm in wearing your wedding ring. If it gives you comfort, wear it.


Julie ~ my Father has been gone for almost 15 years and my Mother still wears her ring and will til the day she dies I'm sure. Please don't let the pressure of anyone make you feel different. Yes, you are not married any longer on paper - but you and only you can make the choice to remove your ring. Please know that you have people out here for you. I'm glad that you have an outlet to be able to reach out to others. I dont comment often but I am a follower of your blog - and I pray for you and your little boys all the time. Please take care of yourself and your precious little ones.

Patti J.

You. Amaze. Me. Hugs, prayers, and blessings, dear friend!

Mo Moss

why is it important to take it off, because you "are not married" anymore. I think I would keep mine on, it is a ring, it is a ring, what does it matter that your husband is in heaven. What happened to eternal life. I see no reason to keep it on but see not reason to take it off. You are a good women mother, and widow. If the time ever comes that you want to see someone else, take it off you feel better. I don't know, But, see no real big deal whether you do or don't. Do as you want. GOD Bless


What an amazing woman you are Julie, sending hugs your way. It's been empowering to watch how you've grown and blossomed the past few years, and even still (without Russ) you are such a strong lady! : )




Honey, you are "married" for as long as you want to be! "Until death do us part" is there to say that's the EARLIEST you can consider yourself no longer bound to your spouse, not the time that you are required to identify as an unmarried woman. You wear that ring as long as you want to; it was a symbol of Russ' undying love for you and just because he lives in another plane doesn't mean he doesn't still love you. You do what you want!

And if you still want to wear it but feel having it on your hand is too much, put yours - and his if you have it - on a chain and wear them close to your heart.

You are "married" as long as you want to consider yourself married - and when you don't, you aren't and you should feel just as fine at that time, too.

Kathy T

Sending love and prayers your way. You are so strong

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