Here is a wonderful story we received in our inbox at from Janice, a reader who some time ago was part of a grief group at Our House, the Grief Support Center founded by Tears and Tequila co-author Jo-Ann Lautman. Her note is an example of the power of friendships in even the most challenging times–and the very heart of our novel, Tears and Tequila. Thank you for sharing your story, Janice.

Recently, I was driving on Westwood Blvd. and passed a little pizza place that’s down the block from where I attended a young widows’ group several years ago. After most sessions, some of us would go there and continue our conversation as we lingered over a bottle of wine (or two). As I drove past, I felt myself missing that place and the time we shared there. How ironic, I thought. That was the worst period of my life. My fiancé had died suddenly. He was 53 and robbed of his future. I mourned his loss as well as the loss of the future we had planned together and my dreams of having a family with him. I remember telling a friend that it hurt to breathe. And yet, the other day I felt a nostalgic pang for the hours I spent at that little restaurant and the friendships that began at that time.

I’m still friends with four of the women from my group. The bond that began forming fifteen years ago is strong. We don’t see each other as often as we’d like…life gets in the way. But our time together is still special. Throughout the years, our little group has seen parents die, kids getting married, and grandchildren being born. We’ve shared stories of first dates…and lasts. As we continue to share laughter and tears, we rarely talk about our loved ones who died. We don’t need to. We understand. They are part of everything…their absence makes even the best events bittersweet. They are part of who we have become and why we’re together. Would I change everything to have my life back to what it was before August 11, 1998? Absolutely. But since I can’t, I’m forever grateful for my group at Our House, the support I received so many years ago, and the not-so-young-anymore widows I am lucky to call my friends.

Do you have a story you’d like to share? Email us at with your story. We’d love to share with our readers. Be sure to let us know if it’s okay to use your first name.
Thanks, Linda and Jo-Ann