General Non-Fiction posted February 14, 2023

This work has reached the exceptional level
Can't hurt to be prepared.

In Case of...

by Wayne Fowler

In Case of …

(I made this large and bold type for aging eyes)

(Hah! – smiley face here)

Dear Debbie, no, make that Dearest Debbie. That doesn’t sound right either. Maybe just Debbie.

Of course, if you are reading this I have passed on. It was a car wreck, wasn’t it? I hope I didn’t hurt anyone else. I probably fell asleep at the wheel, not the first time. I hope, though, that I just wasn’t awake to greet you one morning, that I wasn’t there at all, but gone on. Anyway… this.

In case you haven’t already done it, contact the lawyer. (xxxxxx)

Note: this is in addition to the detailed to do list that we keep in the I.C.E file. There are redundancies, but…

Please remember our living will (that’s just in case you are reading this as I lay in some hospital). And even though we spoke about where to scatter ashes, it really doesn’t matter. A bit here and a bit there, all in the river, in a hole in the back yard, wherever works out for you at the time. Just know that I went on loving you.

The key to the lock box is on a hook behind the fridge. You know that, of course, but in case your brain gets a little fuzzed – you are allowed. (smiley face here)

It would please me to know… that’s a stupid thing to say. I’m gone. Anyway, as I write this, it would please me to know that you chose to keep a screw driver or two. Maybe a flathead and a Philips as a memento. I know you aren’t the sentimental type, but…. Well, it’s okay if you don’t. Remember, the ones with green paint on them were my dad’s; mine have red paint. You can offer my tools to the kids, but they already have full sets I gave to them when we sold and moved. I already told xxxx to take the guns.

You know where the accounts are. No, I don’t have a secret life with coffee cans of gold buried anywhere. (frowny face here) Wish I did for you. I love you. You know about the insurance policies. It wouldn’t hurt to check with credit card companies to see if they still carry any death benefits. And don’t forget xxxxx. There’s $10,000 coverage there. Just check with the local branch.

It wouldn’t hurt to get all the ongoing accounts into your name. Might save trouble down the road. My logins and passwords are in the desk.

Feel free to toss (or Goodwill/Sal Army) any craft stuff I made (birdhouses, furniture, etc). There’s nothing sacrosanct about any of them. And we both know I’m no cabinet-maker. (smiley face here)

I would keep your favorite coffee mugs. And I would probably cry a bit every time I saw, or used, one. And I’d prob’ly lament a bit when one breaks, as they surely would, if you went first. But…

Concerning the house, or any place you might live, always deal with water-where-it-don’t-belong promptly. Water leaks don’t fix themselves and they always get worse.

Mark on the calendar when to change oil in the car.

Of my writing stuff. Just delete whatever you want. I can only say that of yours, should you go first, I’ll probably print out the short pieces and put them into a binder. But I’ll save everything onto a couple thumb drives (redundancy). I’ll go through your photos and print (have printed) the meaningful ones. I’ll offer the kids to copy to themselves any they want. But since we’ve already printed out our annual albums, I won’t stress too much about those that might be lost. What you and I treasured in our time together is still there in my soul.

I know full well that my writing projects are point and laugh material without your editing. Prob’ly all of it even with your editing. (that’s why they aren’t published!)

Darlin’, life goes on. It just does. You can’t keep stuff, not everything. I know you have never been a hoarder, or even a keepsake kind of person. Please don’t think you have to change now. Remember that the kids have notes on the back of things around the house that they want, what goes to who (whom?). Don’t think you have to give stuff away that you will need just because someone’s name is on it!

I would miss you terribly, horribly. I would choke up at every memory of you for years, if not for the rest of my life. But life goes on. If you meet someone who reminds you of me. (Hah!) Or is sweet and doesn’t have any of my failings… Just know that I want you to be happy. And cared for. And helped.

And if he is smarter, stronger, funnier, better than me, well, I might come back and knock his picture off the wall, but… (laughy face here) I’ll know that you are happy, content, and cared for. It’s okay for you to love another after I’m gone. (Note that I said after!) Oh yeah, I forgot… you wouldn’t be reading this if I wasn’t.

Did I mention to change the oil in the car. They say every 5,000 miles, but I’ve always done it after 3,000. This new synthetic stuff… anyway, put it on the calendar. And if you don’t drive that much, have it changed every six months, at least – the calendar. Don’t let tire salesmen talk you into anything. Let the kids check your tires.

Don’t put off goin’ to the doctor if your cough comes back. I ain’t saying to change your not living forever thing, but remember our discussions of quality of life. Cough – doctor! (smiley face here)

Oh, this is really important! Unless you plan to keep our house-sitting commitments, be sure to notify them so they can make other arrangements.

Wouldn’t it be cool if we both went in our sleep on the same night and we could watch the kids pull their hair out dealin’ with… Oh, okay. Still…. (snarky face here)

No kicking yourself if you forget one, or all, of our anniversaries. Our love has never depended on Hallmark. If I wanted to say I love you, I sure wasn’t going to wait for a date. “I love you. I have always loved you.”

Let me repeat that, “I love you. I have always loved you.”

And everything Gus McCrae said to Lorie, or Clara, or Cap’n Call for that matter, I say to you, Debbie Darlin’. (except the whiskey parts) (smiley face here)

I died loving you, Debbie. (very contented face here)

Story of the Month contest entry


I was going to make this an Ohmie story, but Debbie is real while Ohmie and May... And yes, Debbie is my beautiful bride's name. I didn't want any confusion.
*We are pet and house sitters, belonging to two house-sitter websites. We enjoy travel and found an economical and comfortable way to see the country while at the same time helping other fellow travelers.
The picture is hobby work in our backyard gorge.
Pays one point and 2 member cents.

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