Author: Julie Farley
Release date: May 8th, 2013
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Tour: Irresistible Reads Book Tours
Heather Meadows lost the only love she’s ever known. Her perfect, yet ordinary life was turned upside down the day her 38-year-old husband died. Her happily ever after was gone in the blink of an eye. Heather’s life becomes the subject of scrutiny and pity as she tries to pick up the pieces of her shattered world and raise her three children on her own. In the midst of suburbia and gossipy neighbors, Heather tries to re-build a normal life. Little does she know she’s about to trip into a new adventure. An adventure she could never have imagined. Where will her misstep take her and how will Heather handle the prying eyes of those around her?
Heather stood at the altar and read the eulogy. The eulogy for her dead husband.
I met Hank on the first day of kindergarten. He was building with the big blue plastic blocks and knocked them over on top of my head. I went to the nurse and got a boo boo sponge and Hank had to sit on a chair in the corner. We both ended up in tears. On the second day of kindergarten, I accidentally ate Hank's snack. Meadows and Nester, our cubbies were right next to each other. So were our seats. We both ended up in tears, again. The alphabet pushed us together - Heather and Hank, Hank and Heather.
In first grade, we had our first sleepover and shared our first kiss under his bed. In fourth grade, we played Joanie and Chachi at recess. In seventh grade, I lip-synched “Let's Hear it for the Boy” and dedicated it to Hank at the middle school talent show. In high school, he asked me to prom. I said no. Things got complicated.
For 32 years, Hank was my life, my everything. I can't remember my life before Hank. I can't imagine a world without him in it. And he's gone.
But, now, as I look at the faces he loved most, I know Hank is still here. Hayes has his inquisitive mind and all of his hair. Gracie has his eyes and relentless dedication. And Henry, he has his laugh and wicked sense of humor.
We lost the sunshine in our days, the cherry on our sundae, the strong arms that kept us safe and wiped away our tears. I lost my Chachi. We lost our everything.
She got through the entire thing without a tear, which was a minor miracle. But, Heather doubted there were any left anyway. The sun shining through the skylights made the tears streaming down everyone else’s faces glisten. She walked unceremoniously back to her seat in the first pew and sat next to their kids - Hayes, Gracie and Henry. She knew she would have to resume her position as rock of the family shortly, but for this moment she let the rest of her family and friends carry her. Jenny rubbed her back from the next pew back and her mom, who was sitting right next to Jenny, gripped her shoulder so hard Heather could feel nails digging into her skin. Her mother-in-law, Hank’s mom, sobbed as she held her head in her hands, but her father-in-law gave Heather a small smile and a wink. Lauren, Hank’s sister, gave her a sweet, tear-filled smile.
After the ceremony, Heather stood in the back of the church with the kids and shook the hands of all the mourners. The mourners needed to see Heather wasn’t going to crumble. They needed her to be strong, and they needed to see life could and would go on. It took every ounce of Heather’s strength not to fall down onto the floor of the church screaming. Her happily ever after was over.
Julie Farley was born and raised on Long Island. Even though she now lives in Virginia, a piece of her heart still lives in New York. And there's one in Chicago and South Bend, IN home of her alma mater Notre Dame. When Julie's not writing she's teaching preschool or taking care of her own four children. Julie grew up with her nose in a book and her love of books turned into a love of writing as well. Julie published her first book, Tripped Up Love, in May of 2013. The sequel, The New Ever After, will be released in July of 2013.
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