I realize that most of my posts have been from the female widow’s point of view and there is a good reason for that. I happen to be one.
But, in most of the situations and decision-making dilemmas I find myself in, I often wonder what my husband would do if the situation had been reversed. How would he be handling things if he was here and I wasn’t?
To begin with, he would have had a heck of a time finding any sort of paperwork upon my demise. I did the bill paying, filing, and investing. He did all of the money making, traveling, and his fair share of big spending. When I think back now, I could have totally taken him to the cleaners. I could have had a very healthy online poker problem and he would have been none the wiser until I was six feet under.
I know for a fact that he didn’t know where the life insurance paperwork was (because I wasn’t sure I even knew and I’m the one who filed it). Unfortunately, if he couldn’t find that paperwork, he wouldn’t have been able to locate his passport (which was filed with it) so he wouldn’t have even had the option of skipping the country once things got hard. I'm not saying I do that, but I know the option is there.
To be honest, I don’t even know if he knew how to get into our bank account. He could have been out there panhandling with a sign that says, “I have money in an account but I can’t get to it because my wife took the password to the grave. God bless.”
Once he was gone, this potential situation was brought to the attention of many of his male friends who immediately went out and grilled their wives on the status of their accounts and how to get in.
As I was going into my “Remodeling Phase” after his death (which I will go into further on a future blog), I knew he would consider the new T.V. I was buying to be “weak” and that if he had been alive instead of me, nothing less than a 72” IMAX in the family room would have been acceptable.
He would have been free to buy all of the 80s looking furniture that I would never let him get and he would probably go out and find himself an 80s looking girl to go with it. This would have been his secret revenge on me because I never grew the “big hair” he so desired.
On the upside, our lawn would look much better than it does now with me taking care of it.
He would have taken up hunting again now that the woman who hated guns and deer guts was no longer around to say anything about it. And it would have been required that the 80s looking girlfriend look good in camo.
And the kids…oh golly, the kids. Would they still be wearing the clothes that I had bought for them years ago before I was gone? Would my son be in capris and t-shirts that hit above the belly, thereby making him look like a 6 year old Incredible Hulk? Would my daughters be in unintentional minis with shoes that resembled the fine Asian tradition of foot-binding?
Would they all be sitting around the dinner table, loaded with Hamburger Helper, practicing how to belch the “Star Spangled Banner”? Would they ever see a green vegetable again? Would they know that soap was meant for washing your hands and not just for a “mini bubble bath” in the sink?
I know, in reality, he would have handled everything just fine. It just would have taken him a period of adjustment just like it’s taken me. And he would have suddenly realized and appreciated all of the things I did that he never knew about, just as I struggle with figuring out how to get everything done that he did.
My son would be handier, because his dad would be around to show him things. My daughters wouldn’t still be riding their bikes with training wheels on them at the age of 16 because my husband would know how to take them off. And my minivan would have a 6 inch lift on it with shinier wheels and a bigger spoiler.
I’m not saying my way is better than his. It’s just all in your perspective.
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© Catherine Tidd 2010