Senior Sisters Reunion

In twelve days I’ll see my sister whom I haven’t seen in twenty years. It’s time. Two weeks ago she posted on Facebook, pretty much our sole form of communication, that she had a near death experience as a reaction to a new medication.

What am I waiting for, I thought, the funeral! I think not. I shot off an instant message to see if she was open for a visit. No response. Great. She’s either dead or doesn’t want to see me.

I had tried to word my message with an appropriate amount of interest in visiting with her while also indicating a desire to see New Orleans. My goal was to take any pressure off her to feel like she had to entertain me. I mean how do you say, I want to see you before one of us dies.  Viewing her body in a casket is not how I want to remember her.

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The two of us in 1996

 

For two days I moped around convinced that a reunion with my baby sister was not going to happen. Then a response!

Why had I stressed! She’s the one who always made us late. She’s the one who put off everything, and I mean everything, until it was usually too late to do it.  Oh yeah, and everyone loved her. She’s the baby, unbelievably nice, sickeningly sweet but always late.

She wants me to come! She’s excited about my coming. She’s telling all her friends I’m coming! Whoopee! Definitely the response I was hoping for.

The last time Tammy and I saw each other we were young, at least relatively speaking. Tammy was in her early forties and I was a month away from 50. Do the math, the reunion of two senior sisters!

The countdown begins. In twelve days I’ll be on my way from the hot, dry Southern California desert to the hot and humid City of New Orleans. I’m going to see my sister. Day 12 and counting down!

 

 

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Crafty Friends

Daily Prompt: Craft

When I look at who my friends are, I am often surprised. The women I spend the most time with are between the ages of 20 and 40. I am almost 69.  I never even noticed that my friends were so much younger than me, or at least that so many of them were, until recently. I’m not sure what changed, but I’m glad it did.

 

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Me, Lucy, Jasmine and Alisha hiking Grays Mountain

I am a personal trainer at a local gym and, well not to brag but it does make me darn proud, there aren’t many women my age who can keep up with me.  Even though I don’t seek out young women to work out with, we seem to find each other.

 

Working out together is in some ways an intimate experience. We help each other with our form, which means looking at each other’s physical strengths and weaknesses. We know what makes each other sweat, laugh, and cry. Forty year’s difference in age doesn’t seem like much; fitness is a great equalizer.

Last night I had three of my young workout partners over for dinner. I wasn’t paying much attention to their conversation as I was clearing the table, but I heard them talking about someone who had made such a positive difference in their lives, inspired them to go college, and was proof that obstacles were just challenges in disguise. “Who are ya’ll talking about?” They started laughing, almost hysterically. “What’s so funny?”

 

portabello

 

“We’re talking about you!”

“You guys are embarrassing me.”

That’s when I saw it clearly for the first time. I could be mother or grandmother to these women, but instead they are my best friends. When they started telling me the ways I had inspired them, it was my turn to laugh.

 

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Jasmine, Alisha and me working at Bucklin Park

Yes, I inspire them, but they do the same for me–and they motivate me. They keep me focused on giving my best in a workout, they are interested in my life and never me old—well not much!  They respect my education, my fitness, and what they call “wisdom.” I call it survival strategies. If I didn’t work in a gym, I can’t imagine how our lives would have ever crossed. I love my job, and like many of you, feel it is my craft. These young women have been my inspiration to refine my craft, continue to improve, and learn. Because of them, I am the top trainer in our club. They have helped me better at almost everything I do. Because of them, I really feel that I have turned my job into a craft and look forward to going to work everyday.

 

Cyberstalking starts at home

When I started writing this post, I couldn’t decide whether to title it “Cyberstalking Starts at Home” or “My Husband, the Felon.” You can tell which one I chose. And yep, my husband is now a felon. At least he will be if I have anything to say about it.

He has been opening and reading my email, probably for months. Can you believe that. He never asked permission and he never told me that he was doing it. He invaded my privacy and intruded on my conversations with friends and business associates. And he didn’t tell me! That makes it sneaky and clandestine. That’s stalking.

What was he hoping to find? Evidence of an affair? I wish! Evidence of excessive spending? Not my style. How do I know he’s reading my email, you ask? He let something slip, something that was only accessible in an email.

I don’t think he is a criminal or has intentions of doing me harm, at least I hope not. But I do think he’s crossed over the line that married couples draw to have a few morsels of privacy. We need boundaries.

Years ago (we’ve been married over 20) I asked hubby specifically to not open mail or packages unless both our names are on it. No problem. Mutual respect. Great!

Now, here it comes, wouldn’t you think the same directive applies to email? Well, I do. And so does Oprah. That’s good enough for me. That practically makes it relationship law. The consensus of Oprah followers is that even if your spouse gives you his/her password, it’s still your spouse’s “personal” email and should be respected and left alone.

It gets even better. In Florida, I don’t live there, but I could move. Anyway, in Florida if you read someone else’s email and disclose it to someone else you could go to prison for five years. Five years! If you read it without the permission of the owner, even if you keep it to yourself, you could still be guilty of a misdemeanor and get a year in prison. I gotta tell you, that sounds about right.cyber stalking

Reading someone’s email without their permission is illegal! But you know what is worse, the violation of trust. How can you fix that?

First thing I did, no brainer—changed the password. What next? Do I say anything? Do I just go on like I don’t know he’s been reading my book club list and the recipes my girlfriend sends me? Will he say anything when he tries to access my email again and my old password doesn’t work? Probably not unless he wants to fess up to the crime. The chief of police is a personal friend. I could call him. Tempting.

What to do? What to do? There is no conclusion to this post, no summary, no pulling together of thoughts. Wow! Writing a blog is better than therapy. I feel better already.