3 years ago I wrote this for an e-mail
to my friends.... In my process of
cleaning out some old files, I came
across it again. It is just as true
today as it was then.
I have a friend........ her name is Lois......
I met Lois 15 years ago.... her
husband was dying in our facility...
she seem to need a friend. So we
talked on my lunch time. I had lost
Marvin just 9 months before, so I knew
what she was going thru. We talked
about the loneliness. And one of the
big subjects was Social Security. Like
Marvin and I .... she and Leo were on
disablity Social Security. And being
SS had put me thru the ringer at the
end of Marvin's life over their checks.
I wrote down what to do and what not
to do... what to send back. And who to
contact if she had trouble.
I wasn't working the day Leo passed away...
And after the funeral, I wrote her a letter
telling what widowhood was like. How
people treated you and how your emotions
will effect you. And some the dumb
mistakes you can make. And how something
will make you feel like you are losing your
mind. Told her after she read it to put it
away in her draw and take it out in 6 months
or a year later... to see if it would still help her.
I heard from Lois two months after the
funeral. She called me and told me how
much the letter had helped. That everything
I said would happen...did... but she was
prepared because of my letter.
Over the years, Lois and I have gone to
lunch, but as the years pass, it seems like
it was harder for us to pin down a day.
We were always glad to see each other
when we ran into each other at the stores
around town. Each time telling each
other to call to get together for lunch. But
with her being a farmer and my working
at nights...and sleeping days... and winter
were off limits as Lois hated to drive in
the snow or ice. We haven't had lunch
for 3 years. Still seeing each other about
once a year in a store and catching up
on the latest news. I always sent her a
birthday card and Christmas card..
Last night Lois called. I knew she had
been having stomach troubles... has for
years... but she finally got on SS because
she is 65... and finally has insurance, so
she went to the Dr. about that darn
stomach problems, which seems to be
worse...and she was having trouble
with her throat.... her voice goes to
being like a frog after talking quite a
bit. To make a long story shorter....
Lois has throat cancer....
So my message... make sure you
make those calls for lunch and go....
you never know how long you will
have to go to those lunches... you see
Lois only has 6 to 9 months left. And if
that friend ends up like Lois.... go
make what time is left worth while....
The update on this is...Lois passed away
10 months after I wrote this. Lois was the
neatest lady. She was a stunt woman in
Hollywood, in the early 50's. She owed
her own business in California. A weld
shop I believe. Then tired of the whole
California scene she came to Elmira
area. She ran a bar there for a few years.
It has been tore down to make way for
the highway. She had a great laugh.
She was beautiful, wore jeans and
western boots, and usually a western
shirt.She ran that farm of hers for 15 years.
She did all the tractor work, she was
a go getter. And now she rest with her
beloved Leo and their dog.
So remember your friends, make that
coffee break date and keep it. You never
know what turn life will take.
A Schweitzer Birthday Saga
11 hours ago