oldsunbird

"I have been more outrageous and more alone and more courageous than the world has known. Passerby, my heart is like your own."

Archive for the tag “relationships”

My name

I started the process today of having my last name changed. This is the story behind such an action:

I was married to Forrest for 51 years.  He died in 2007.  I was lonely, met Richard and married him in 2011.  Just weeks  after our wedding, Richard fell ill and he died six months later of pancreatic cancer.  We spent a lot of time with hospice health care givers and Richard’s family and friends.  The circumstances prevented us from developing the give and take of a real marriage.

I was able to keep Richard at home, which was his greatest wish.  He died in his favorite chair in the living room with his family and friends around him and me holding his hand.

I knew that Richard’s first wife had been the love of his life;  I placed her photo on the mantel where he could see it and just be with her as he watched TV.

I’m glad I was there for him and able to help him die at home, but now I want to finish my life with the name of the husband I grew up and shared my love and most of my life with. I spoke with a lawyer today and the process has begun.  I feel as if I’ve taken the first step of coming back home.

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Bad News

I had a cousin just a few months younger than me.  Her name was Terry.  We met 27 years ago when we both were 58.   It’s a long story, but briefly, she lived in Kansas and had been looking for her mother  for years; finally found us in Missouri, but her mother had passed away.  I was thrilled to have her in my life.

She and her husband visited us a couple of times, and my husband and I drove to Kansas to see her.  We talked on the phone and exchanged letters.

She was such a gift; we both lamented the fact that we lived so far from each other.  I felt we had been cheated (she much more than I)  for not knowing each other when we were younger.  My dad’s family all lived close, within walking distance of one another.  If we had known each other then, we would have been playmates, probably best friends.   And then, after finally  meeting, we still couldn’t see each other that often because of the distance, and, later, due to the fact that we both had physical problems that made traveling difficult.

Our contact has been less frequent the past few years, and I’ve been the one to call.  Terry had been quite ill and on medication that left her drowsy, with slurred speech; I did most of the talking.  Not a very rewarding exchange.

I was thinking about her today and realized it had been quite awhile since we talked.  I decided to call her and was looking forward to hearing her voice.   Her husband answered, told me she died last April.    And now I regret that I didn’t call her sooner.

I’ve had that experience before.  I called my best friend after my husband died and learned she had died months before.  You’d think I would have learned by now to live as if today is the only day.  To not let time grow between us.

But time seems to go so fast.  And I think….tomorrow.  Then tomorrow comes, and I let it slide by too  And before I know it, weeks, months have passed.  Nothing in life is so certain that we can take anything for granted.

I’m glad, and grateful, that my cousin and I were able to enjoy each other, if only briefly.   If she hadn’t found us, I would never have known I had a cousin in Kansas.  She enriched my life and she’s a part of me now.

I love you Terry.  Thank you for the gift of you.

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