Sunday, March 12, 2017

     I am fascinated about how couples make major decisions. I know some couples who, looking at their senior futures, disagree on where they want to “settle.” The husband wants to move south, and the wife wants to either move north or stay put so as to be close to the family and/or  close to cherished friends and “the familiar.” 

      Last night at a cocktail party, I met a couple who spent a number of years in Los Angeles and then moved out of the country for six years. When they moved here, the wife was very unhappy. The husband told me that he was enjoying his new lifestyle here and had plenty of friends with whom to enjoy his tennis and other activities. He is 84. His wife, he told me, was very unhappy here, as she hasn’t met any ladies that she really enjoys, and she misses her close friends terribly. My heart immediately went out to this woman I don’t know because I had to make the decision a year ago about leaving my dear friends and my entire identity which took me ten years to create. This woman had no choice, as things in the foreign country forced them to move. I had a choice; I could have just said, “No!” My friends who are staying put, just said, “No! I’m not moving.” I could have done that and lived with the consequences, but I chose to give it a try.

     My “stay put” friends are happy where they are, and their husbands have, apparently, accepted their wives’ answer. The new woman I don’t know is very unhappy. I am ecstatic in my new surroundings. Is Mr. Wonderful thrilled with the move? Not sure. Ironic, n’est-ce pas? 

     I approached the “unhappy woman” last night who did not know that I had gotten the story from her husband. I asked her a couple of questions, and she quickly let me know how unhappy she was. I told her I completely understood, and I asked her if she wanted to have lunch sometime and just chat about stuff. Her whole face lit up. Whether or not we ever have lunch is irrelevant. The point is that when we are unhappy, sometimes all it takes is an “I get it!” to give us hope and energize us. 

     I would have been thrilled had I felt like this woman if someone had asked me to lunch. I would have thought, “Well, maybe there’s a chance that I might meet someone of like mind who would listen and comfort.” 

     Have you met anyone lately that needed that extra little encouragement? Do you know a couple who is dealing with a difficult decision that you have had to make? Maybe a comforting word to one of them might help in their thought process. 

     We got an extra hour today. What could you do with that hour to help someone else?