I recently had an essay, Grieving My First Husband's Death & My Second Husband's Deployment, published in Insider Parenting. This was a hard one. I wrote the first draft of the essay in December 2020, not long after my husband deployed, and then I couldn't touch it for many, many months. I wrestled with edits here and there, and then cut it down to half its original length for Insider. The past couple years have been so difficult for many people, but I think enormously so for parents, especially those of young children. I was dealing with a lot of stress when I wrote the essay, but honestly, it's nothing compared to what I have experienced recently, nearly a year into solo parenting three children through a pandemic. Though the essay, which explores how my grief (and parenting experience) around my first husband's death mirrored so closely that of my second husband's deployment, was challenging to write, I'm grateful to have it out in the world.
Last month, I was thrilled to be featured in the January 2019 issue of Brain Injury Hope Magazine, which highlighted their 2019 Hope Heroes (I was honored to be selected as one) and featured essays from brain injury survivors and caregivers who are making an impact on the brain injury community. You can read the issue here and find more about the Brain Injury Hope Network on their website.
It has been a very hectic spring, so this is very late, but I'm pleased to have had an essay in the March (Brain Injury Awareness Month!) issue of Hope Magazine. The issue had a special section on young people affected by brain injury and my essay explores my own history with head injuries, as well as being a caregiver for Steve, and how that all led me to my current position with the Brain Injury Association of America's Maine Chapter. You can read the issue and my essay, "Overcoming Barriers," here.
My latest essay, up on Role Reboot today, is a meditation on all of the times that people have marveled at my strength and how I honestly believe that we are all just doing the best we can.
"I don’t think people understand how little control one has. It is a tidal wave, and you have no choice but to move with the water. When you don’t move with it, that’s when you break. That’s when you drown. That’s when you’re never again found. And deep down, we all want to live, so you just have to move with the wall of water. Strength, love, and life be damned."
Read Moving with the Water.
Sarah Kilch Gaffney lives and writes on a little piece of land in Maine.