LYNN HAVEN, Fla. (WMBB) – It’s hard to imagine losing a loved one, especially your partner in life.

For Jessica Ayers, the tragic and sudden death of her husband, Justin Ayers, turned her world upside down.

Now, almost nine years later, she’s sharing her grief journey in a book.

She hopes to give others inspiration and support during what is arguably someone’s darkest days.

“My book really starts about two weeks after where I’m standing in a deli, and I realize that Justin’s dead,” said Jessica Ayers. “And I’m just looking around and noticing that life is going on as normal.”

Courtesy: The Singing Widow

Life was going on as normal when her life was everything, but normal.

Justin was her high school sweetheart, husband of 10 years, and band partner.

He was shot and killed by a stray bullet in June 2014.

“The bullet traveled over 200 yards to our house,” said Ayers. “[It] dodged dozens and dozens of trees and entered our home and killed Justin instantly.”

Courtesy: The Singing Widow

Just three days prior, the couple welcomed their son, Jaxon into the world.

They were introducing their newborn son to the family at their St. Andrews home at the time of the shooting.

A convicted felon, who was drunk and high, was playing around with a gun, outside at a nearby home in their neighborhood.

“For the most part, when your partner first dies, you’re just in shock, you don’t really process the reality of the situation,” said Ayers.

She may never understand it, but she’s found comfort in writing about it.

She started a blog called “The Singing Widow,” online and on Instagram.

In just the last few years, she’s garnished more than 60,000 followers on the social media platform.

“I have a lot of widows who follow me on there, and I just couldn’t keep up with my DM’s,” said Ayers. “They were constantly DMing me, asking me questions and what I realized was a lot of these questions are the same questions and issues that I had those first years. I was like, just put in a book.”

And that’s what she’s done.

This month, she published her book, “My Partner is Dead. Now What?”

It focuses on the first three years of her grief journey, which she calls the most crippling.

“When I was a new widow, I would have loved to have a book like this,” said Ayers. “It doesn’t give you all the answers, obviously, but it would have been nice to realize Oh, this is why I feel this way and other people feel this way.”

She said she also struggled to find a relatable book when she went searching for reading material after Justin died.

“I really couldn’t find something that spoke to what I needed,” said Ayers. “And what I really needed was something to justify my pain and my anger, because you’re just so dark and, you know, so sad.”

She said she also needed something to give her hope.

“That’s what I really hope that this book does for people.”

The book is available through Amazon or for purchase at her Book Release Party and Fundraiser on Friday, May 26.

It’s called “It’s All Happening.”

The event will be held at the Bay Arts Alliance in Downtown Panama City at 6:30 p.m.

Tickets start at $10. You can purchase them here until noon Friday.

Courtesy: The Singing Widow

Ayers said this event is a way to say thank you to the community who supported her tremendously after her husband died.

“Now, nine years later, I can step back and see everything that they did for me and the way they lifted us up.”

In addition to food, drinks, and live music, there will also be ways to donate and contribute to the newly created ‘Justin Ayers Memorial Fund,’ at the Gulf Coast Children’s Advocacy Center.

The fund will support victim advocates across Bay County so they can support victims of crimes when they need things like food, clothing, or shelter.

“They really are just not only a shoulder and someone to help care for you, but if you’re going through a trial, and a lot of people who go through a crime, go through a trial, these people help you through that process.”

Ayers said her victim advocate made a world of difference in her life.

Those who can’t make the event Friday night are still able to donate to the Justin Ayers Memorial Fund.

Donations are being accepted through the Gulf Coast Children’s Advocacy Center’s Venmo account, @GulfcoastCAC, or by check. Be sure to specify on your donations that they are for the fund.

Although she has learned to live with her loss and move forward, she still grieves Justin every day, just in a different way.

“I think about him every day. I probably cry at least three or four times a week thinking about him,” said Ayers. “Different circumstances come up in life that really trigger that love that you have for that person.”

She’s since remarried and is now a mom of two. She gave birth to their daughter, Sloane, in July.

“I still enjoy talking about Justin, and I enjoy looking at his photo and especially talking to him, to his son. And I’ll always love him,” said Ayers. “Don, my current husband, is so supportive of that, and he knows that we’ll always kind of be in this relationship together, the three of us.”

Courtesy: The Singing Widow

Finding love after loss is part of her story, but it’s not the focus of this book. She said this is only the beginning when it comes to publishing.

“I’m not going to give myself a limit, but I have at least five different titles that I will be working on in the future,” said Ayers. She said a few of those will focus on dating as a widow and finding love after loss.

In the meantime, she said if anyone is currently going through loss and a difficult time, she reminds them to give themselves grace.

“Just give yourself grace and give yourself time, because eventually you will get to a place where you do smile and you do laugh again,” said Ayers. “But it does take time and it does take a little bit of work, and my book really focuses on the work.