The Widow Carlson is fed up. Friends have been kind. So have neighbors, even strangers. But things turn really weird when a death happens.
The nightly robocalls from credit card companies- can they let the body cool? These companies get more people into trouble than any other financial institution. Earl and I never kept a dime in common which made for a fight-free marriage. An Illinois attorney friend said, “I just LOVE to hose credit card companies.” Right on!
One medical creditor with a bill of seventeen dollars went immediately to collection to pay corporate law firms hundreds of dollars for a few bucks.
Junk mail abounds. The hospital sent Earl a post mortem letter asking if he would like to honor staff by contributing to the Foundation. The following day, a huge bill came to “The Estate of.” I just finished my best friend’s estate. Her mail was forwarded here, and the same institution sent her a “Welcome to your new home!” letter soliciting donations from the dead.
Even the funeral home has a mailing list. A survey came for a free funeral estimate. At the bottom of the page it read, “Please accept our apologies if this questionnaire arrived at a difficult time.” It did. The owner said an outside firm does these, and people like these tasteless reminders of their own demise. I’d rather call Pakistan for computer advice.
It took his family four hours after Earl’s last breath to turn on me. They piled his junk from the hospital into my car. They asked if I would be OK getting home, then went out to dinner.
A church service was organized that he never wanted. These straight-laced “believers” were going without me to meet a pastor who is known for his eccentricities. I called him to ask what he was planning. It sounded fine. In a restaurant after, they let me have it because they thought I had changed the service. Worse, I had invited one of Earl’s good friends. She was actually called and told not to come. They could have held a service in the state where they live. No one has called me since they left the next day except his mother, who wanted Earl’s sports car, which now belonged to me.
I knew what would happen when we married, that our life together would be cut short due to Earl’s lifetime medical issues. We did not have children because he was so afraid of having a sick child. I no longer feel part of his family.
Earl was the most magnificent man in the world. We had a wonderful marriage in an age where many marriages don’t last. I have precious memories. The best one after his death is scattering his ashes on the football field at Wyoming with his buddies, reserving some to place around his beloved father’s memorial bench at UW. My comfort is that Earl is at peace, free of suffering and pain, running free and laughing in Heaven.