Melinda Lyons

Melinda Richarz Lyons earned a B.A. from the University of North Texas and has been a freelance writer for over forty years. Her articles have appeared in many publications, including Cats Magazine, True West, Nashville Parent, Frontier Times, Reminisce, Kids, Chicken Soup for the Soul: True Love, Cincinnati Family Magazine, The Tennessean and Chicken Soup for the Soul: Grandmothers.

An award winning songwriter, Ms. Lyons’ work has been recorded by several Western artists. She is the author of three books, Women Only Over Fifty, Murder at the Oaklands Mansion and Crossing the Minefield, which garnered a Royal Palm Literary Award. Crossing the Minefield has also been incorporated into bereavement programs across the country and is featured on many grief websites.

Ms. Lyons currently serves as Vice President of the Friends of the Tyler Public Library, where she also volunteers.

I Feel Guilty Being Happy Alone No Comments

One of my widowed friends recently told me, “I feel guilty being happy alone.” She had been happily married for over forty years and widowed for a few years. My friend explained that she had discovered how comfortable she was as a single woman. To her, being happy without her husband somehow reflected on how she…

Grieving for a Spouse Who is Not Yet a Spouse No Comments

Recently my twenty-six-year-old niece Kate lost her fiancé in a car accident just two days before their wedding. In addition to her deep grief, Kate also had to face many issues because they were not yet married.First I believe she was robbed of memories. When I lost my husband, at least I had almost forty years of memories to help sustain me. Kate and her fiancé did not even have the chance…

Absence of Touch No Comments

Six weeks after my father died, I lost my fifty-six-year-old husband very suddenly. My mother and I have often discussed how sad and strange it was to be widowed at about the same time. Because of factors like our ages, some issues we faced were obviously very different. But Mother and I also found many similarities in our journeys through grief…

Unrealistic Memories No Comments

After you lose someone you love very much, I think it is only natural to think about that person in a very positive way. But sometimes we can go too far, and if we do, we end up with unrealistic memories. I know my husband, Sid, was very bothered when a friend of his died, and his wife promptly turned him into a saint. Sid scolded me about that, saying, “When I go, don’t turn me into some super guy!”…

Wedding Rings and Worldly Things No Comments

After I was widowed, I became part of a group of men and women who had each also suffered the loss of a spouse. We often got together and discussed our mutual struggles, from financial issues to decisions about when it was the right time to do certain things. What to do about wedding rings and when to do something with our spouses’ worldly possessions were topics that came up very often. And the one thing I discovered was that both of these concerns should be handled in a very individual way. I think it comes down to what you are comfortable with…

Why Do People Say Hurtful Things? No Comments

I learned a lot after I lost my husband, and one of the things I learned is what not to say to someone who is grieving. We are all different, but I found it hurtful when people would say things like “Oh you will see a reason for this someday.” Maybe that would be comforting for someone else to hear, but I found those types of comments very unsettling, to say the least. Our emotions are turned upside down after a terrible loss, and in my case I know I was overly sensitive. But maybe the reason words like that upset me was because I felt they belittled my grief. I don’t know…

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The Road Back To Happiness No Comments

What if you woke up to discover that your happiness was completely gone? That happened to me one cold November morning. Sid, my husband and soul mate for almost thirty-eight years, had died suddenly in his sleep. I felt like my heart could not possibly go on beating without him. I remember lying alone in the dark that night, begging God to take me, too. But when the sun came up, I was still breathing. Even though I could barely function at the time, I knew deep in my shattered heart that somehow I would have to eventually figure out how to find the road back…

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Why Do I Feel Worse Now Than I Did Right After My Loss? No Comments

Grief counseling was invaluable to me after I lost my husband, Sid. He was only fifty six and died very suddenly. There were so many feelings during the grief process that seemed to come out of nowhere. Of course it didn’t make my loss less painful, but just having my feelings validated seemed to help a tiny bit. In our group session one night, our counselor explained the difference between a sudden loss versus an anticipated loss. Imagine that you are standing on a beach…

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I’m Not a Couple Anymore No Comments

On my journey through grief, I ran into so many unexpected things. It is overwhelming enough to deal with the sadness you expect after the loss of a loved one, but I think it is even harder to deal with the many unexpected aspects of grief. One of the things that took me by surprise after the death of my husband was the loss of my couple friends. Perhaps loss is not the right word—they were still there. But as time went on, they started to drift away. That was so painful for me, but yet, as my grief counselor said, it was normal. As she bluntly put it, “You are not a couple anymore.”…

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