Bill E. Branscum ©2000
Sometimes, best intentions notwithstanding, things
just don't work out the way we intend. If you're also a single
parent, I don't suppose you need me to tell you about that.
Years ago, I married a marvelous woman; mostly because
she was beautiful, but also because she was the most hard working,
dedicated, honest and dependable person I had ever met. Our marriage
was the single most valuable thing in my life, from the first
day to the day it was over.
We were a team, and it was a wonderful thing to
be part of it. My wife loved me, cared for me, pulled me along
when I felt that I could go no further, pushed me in the right
direction when I could not see the way, stood by me through life's
darkest moments and stood over me when I was down.
I loved her more than life, and I was grateful beyond
words that life put us together. There was never a day that went
by that I didn't appreciate her, the gift that she was, and the
gifts that she gave me.
As only a woman can do, she gave me life, four beautiful
children through whose eyes I have been able to relive all of
life's magic and mystery. Waiting up for Santa, amusement parks
that seem to have no end, clowns that are marvelously funny, catching
that first fish, the shiny new bike, woods where fairies and goblins
dwell - she made it possible for me to vicariously reenact childhood,
but with the ability to control it this time around and try to
make it perfect for all of us, over and over again.
People found us peculiar and I think, perhaps, too
good to be true. In real life, people just don't love each other
like that. It was our policy that, "If we can't all go, we
don't go." While I suppose there must have been much we did
not do, I cannot recall missing out on a thing. I do have clear
recollections of so many marvelous things that we did together.
Unfortunately, nothing good lasts forever and it
seems that the better a thing is, the more inviolable the rule.
I never thought it possible but, whatever it was that cemented
or souls together, it went away. I don't know how, I don't know
where, and I cannot begin to imagine why, but the day came that
she was there for me no longer.
Younger than I, and lacking life's experience, I
suppose there were things she had to do. At any rate, she met
the man she felt was best for her and went her separate way. It
happened over night and nobody who knew us could believe it. To
so many people, we were the perfect marriage, and ours was a marriage
that they could believe in; for my friends and family, it was
a faith shattering disappointment to see us fail.
In retrospect, perhaps I had, "too many eggs
in one basket." When she left, my wife, business partner,
the mother of my children, the only person I ever really trusted
and confided in, and the best friend I had in the world went with
Some of it was ugly, and it was all intolerably
painful, but in the years we had together she was everything a
wife and mother could be. More than that, she gave me everything
in the world that means anything to me; although we'll never again
share the kind of love that makes a marriage, Lord knows, I will
always love her for that.
There could never have been a good time to leave
but, in a way, I think she chose the best time that she could.
She certainly didn't bail on us, she left us when we were winning,
when life looked good and there were no storms in sight. I sincerely
wish her well.
weather friends are the best of friends
When the seas and the skies are blue
When fair winds blow, they'll share your sun
The image of steady and true
the wind kicks up and the sky goes dark
You'll find yourself alone
They'll avoid the risk and shirk the work
To get you safely home
foul-weather friend, though thick and thin
Will stand and see things through
'Til life's storms end, they can leave you then,
When your seas and skies are blue
To Dee, wherever life carries you, whatever you do, I wish
you health, happiness, luck and Godspeed.