My Husband Walked Into a Bar

My husband was out of town for business this past week.

As I’m winding down for the evening, I receive the following text:

Sitting at the bar of the steak house that I am at and there is a woman in her 70s who is cracking me up.

My response?

That’s the kind of woman I want you to pick up in bars:)

He chatted with this lady through the evening, sharing pieces of their conversation with me.

She was in her mid 70s and was recently widowed after being married for 50 years.

50 years.

With the same person.

And then they’re gone.

Wow.

I remember how alien it was to be alone after 16 years.

But that’s a drop in the bucket.

My husband was drawn to this woman’s energy. She had made the decision to fully embrace this next chapter of her life, even though it wasn’t asked for.

She got a tattoo. On her butt.

She dates younger men. Plural. Her pick line? “Do you have life alert? I’ve fallen for you and can’t get up.”

She is going ziplining this week and told stories of her other adventures.

She didn’t use the excuse, “I’m too old.” She didn’t live in the past, although she didn’t forget it either.

She shared a bit of marital advice with my husband.

Write notes. Lots of them.

She went on to talk about how her husband left her notes on an almost daily basis. She laughed about it at the time since their frequency made them not-so-special.

But then he became ill. And he died.

And now she looks back at the notes and smiles, remembering the relationship.

And now she realizes that even if each note may not have seemed special at the time, the accumulation of them is priceless because it speaks of the affection and bond held through the years.

I understand.

Brock and I are note writers. It’s amazing the power of a few simple words or a smily face can have on your mood and outlook. I have a folder filled with the ones I have received from him over the years. I hope I’ll need a box to hold them before the end.

I enjoyed my by proxy evening with the this woman – a reminder that you are never too old, that you can fully embrace life after unwanted change and to never take yourself too seriously.

I think I’ll hold off on that gluteal tattoo, however:)

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14 thoughts on “My Husband Walked Into a Bar

  1. This is such a fabulous post. Thank you so much for sharing. What a remarkable mentality of this woman. She is definitely an inspiration to me. If this woman, in her 70s, can have that mindset about her life then I, at 24, most certainly can.

  2. Thank you this was the perfect post to start my day. I so want to be in my 70’s and choosing to eat dessert every meal rather than be in a nursing home where they won’t let me have salt because it might affect my blood pressure. I think I will go eat a piece of chocolate.

  3. Notes are precious – little snippets of love. When I left my ex I took every single one of them. I was actually surprised he kept any, until I read the ones he kept (as I burned them in a fire).
    It’s wonderful this woman has hers, and that you have yours. They hold the voice of the writer.

  4. I love this. I love her advice of writing notes too. My mum is 68 and claims she is not yet middle-aged. I feel like this lady is the same, and she has some new adventures just waiting to happen.

  5. Hind sight is 20/20 (no pun intended) smile. Love the tattoo story. My first husband and I were married for 14 years. I remember we went to a marriage retreat and came back so revived. We’d written letters to each other all weekend. (The idea was, that you write letters and eventually learn to communicate with out letters, guess they’d never heard about texting back then!) When we came home to pick up our young son at a much older couple’s house, I remember the husband saying… “Don’t ever lose this!!!” And my husband reassured him we wouldn’t. I wrote SEVERAL more letters to him. He never wrote to me. Except after our divorce, telling me in not so many words that he regretted our divorce. A little too late, I was remarried by then. We’d tried. Well I’d tried. I even been stupid enough to think that having another baby after already being married for ten years, would help. It always seems too late. We separated when she was 3. (But I will never regret having her! She was the BEST going away present I could have asked for! And we laughed about it later. We had a very amicable divorce. We said it was for “the kids” but I suspect we both never stopped loving each other. My first husband has since died. And slowly, all those things I remembered have too… but I do remember the promises and the reflections, the way we’d spend the night on our roof top of our first apartment in San Pedro, a block from the beach on hot summer nights. Or the times we’d talk in the after glow of making love, as he’d light up a cigarette and tell me. If ever left him, he’d never get over it. But that he knew how stubborn he was and he’d never EVER let me know. A thousand years later… When he was in the last stages of a quick 3 month diagnosis (lung cancer) my daughter and I went to him before he died, to say our separate goodbyes. And he begged me not to leave him. He died the next day. It always haunted me, that I didn’t stay. And I am not talking just about at the end. It destroyed me. I took my vows very seriously as a young 21 year old novice. When I was 36 I said those same vows again to a man who deserved me to feel the same way about them. I didn’t believe in those vows in exactly the same way ever again. And I’ve paid for it. Just recently, I have been reflecting on marriage. Found this blog and love it. I guess in conclusion, I’ve realized that people hurt you. They dent your faith in love. But it is possible to recover and even believe in it again! I almost missed the whole message I was meant to GET!

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