A few days after my husband died I met a woman at the Coroners Office who told me that people often leave gifts after they die. For her a few months after her husband died, she discovered a voice mail from him that she had never listened to. It was Valentines day, and in the message he told her how much he loved her and their kids. She said it was his gift to her and that many people get these gifts and that they are common.
So, I have been wondering what my gift will be, and as I’ve gone through the process of dealing with the paper work involved in a death, I remembered my husband insisting I state my occupation as “writer” on our marriage license. At the time, I was a Product Manager at Bank of America, but I did it anyway.
From the beginning my husband helped me with my work. When we first met, I was changing jobs and he insisted I ask for more money when I negotiated my salary and I listen to him and was given a giant raise, later, I would go onto bill $100 per hour when I worked as a marketing consultant. He had so much confidence in my abilities. He would edit anything I wrote for work that was important. He also listened patiently to every Power Point presentation I ever gave and he always gave me the best feed back. He never tampered with the spirit of my work, but would only improve it, and because of this he was my favorite editor.
Even though he himself was a beautiful writer, when he would read my writing he would tell me that if he could write like I could that he wouldn’t do anything else. I am now trying to honor his wishes and write. And I am able to write almost effortlessly now, and these words are his gift to me.