THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE!
Hi, welcome 🧡 My name is Tatum. I created TATUM THE LABEL in 2018 as a side hustle, hand-painting custom jean and leather jackets. Shortly after, life took a different turn for me - I met the man of my dreams, started a manufacturing company and put this side hustle on hold.
March 26th, 2022, I was in a fatal car accident and lost my soulmate, Keith. I felt alone. I didn't know where to turn and I didn't know what could help a grieving 27 year old widow. Through the darkest times imaginable, I picked up my iPad and found a little joy in drawing. I found peace in creating, sitting in my grief with loved ones, and helping other grievers along the way.
Death brings people together. I learned through the grief community that no matter what type of loss we’ve experienced, we can all gain deep connections to others who have lost a loved one. I soon realized that I was not alone. I was capable of feeling the same things for Keith, as a friend was feeling after losing her dad. Loss is not meant to be compared - it is our own individual experience and always will be, but we don't have to go through it alone.
I reopened TATUM THE LABEL because I want to help the loved, the lost, the lonely, the misunderstood, the grieving, and everyone in between. I wouldn't be here today without the support of the grief community, my loving family, my dear friends, and my beloved Keith.
TATUM THE LABEL will use our GIVE BACK program to help the grief community. Learn more about the people YOU support here: GIVE BACK.
Thank you for all of your love and support. <3 Share your story with me here.
Let's all say it together,
FOR THE LOVE OF KEITH.
Keith is impossible to sum up -- we'd be here all day if I had the opportunity to share with you all of the wonderful things he dreamt of and accomplished in his life.
When you were around Keith, your heart got softer, your smile grew bigger and your dreams multiplied. You thought, I’m not living my life as good as I can be.
Keith was resilient. He was a work-horse. He knew hustle better than any of us. He knew discipline and perseverance. No matter what it was, work or personal - he set goals and didn’t stop until he achieved them. He was far from a complainer and would go out of his way to help his loved ones, no matter the circumstances. After working a long day of his own, he would show up at our shop with dinner and a positive attitude - ready to help me achieve my goals. Needless to say, Keith was 1 of a kind.
When Keith and I first met, we sat by a campfire at the Glamis sand dunes, talking for hours in our own little bubble. I wanted to make it clear that I wasn’t looking for a boyfriend. At that time, life had made it hard on me to believe in that “true-love”, “meant for each other” stuff you hear about in fairytales. Leave it up to our Keith to find what he wants and go after it with his all. It didn’t take long until Keith flipped my whole world upside down. We had gone on 1 date when I discovered - I want to be with this man for the rest of my life. I knew at that moment, fairytale love does exist.
When we were starting to get to know each other, I asked Keith what his biggest goal in life was. Without any hesitation, he answered, “I want to be a husband and father.” I was taken back and thought, what 25 year old talks like this? Is he just saying this to impress me? I quickly learned that Keith didn’t have a lying bone in his body. In fact, he was probably the worst liar I knew. Keith couldn’t wipe a smile off his face long enough to tell a lie! Keith was a gentleman, the best one I know. He was humble and deserving of so much love and life. Deserving of marriage and fatherhood.
Keith grew up in San Diego, and I in Phoenix. We would trade off weekends driving to each other. We both had big, life-long careers keeping us apart. Keith had taken after his father in the elevator trade in San Diego. After his apprenticeship, he passed his exam and became an Elevator Mechanic for Otis Elevator.
We were 4 months into our relationship when Keith called me and said, “How crazy would it be if I moved to Arizona for work? It might be fate, but they are willing to transfer me with a promotion if I move to Arizona… and they want me to start this Monday.” It was the quickest and easiest YES I’ve ever said in my whole life. We both knew it was fate. The world had wanted us together and we wanted to be together more than anything. 4 days later, Keith moved in with me and our fairytale love took another big step.
Keith’s love and devotion taught me so much. He was not only so loving and supportive, but the most dependable and consistent. Not a day went by that I didn’t get a kiss on the forehead before work and a good morning text or a note on the fridge explaining what he was thankful for that day. We went to bed each night and said 3 things we loved about each other. I didn’t even know love could be so effortless and magical. Keith was my rock, my balance, and my whole world. I truly lived life at half capacity before I met him.
447 days -- 1 year, 3 months and 22 days, I had the privilege of living a fairy tale love with Keith. Not a day went by that he didn’t give me the experience of being deeply understood, truly supported and completely and utterly loved. Each day, Keith woke up happier than the last. Happy to get out and show the world what he had to offer. Without a doubt, day number 447 with Keith started out just as perfect as any other.
We spent the day by the lake, sitting for hours, watching boats go by, talking about how fortunate we are for our lives, our love, our families, friends and our jobs. Keith said all day long, “I love us. I love my life. I couldn’t picture a better life than the one we live.” Some of the last things we talked about were our goals in life together. Marriage, kids and work. Keith said, “I don’t know if I want to be an elevator mechanic for the rest of my life, but while I am, I want to be the best elevator mechanic this world has ever seen.” And that was Keith, the best thing this world has ever seen.
Someone once told me, when you meet your true love, your souls become one. When you lose your true love, you lose a part of your soul with them - but that means that a part of their soul is still with you. Because your souls are one, he can now see the world through your eyes. So go out, and see the world with him - he will be there every step of the way. So Keith, I promise to take you everywhere with me, forever. I promise to love you to the moon and back… and back again. Let’s all promise to live like Keith - Smile through everything, move with grace, work with a passion, love wholeheartedly and live unapologetically.