Thursday, July 11, 2013


     Mandy hated opera but, when we first started dating I was singing and performing it and she went to every single rehearsal and performance and clapped just as loudly as anyone else because she supported me and was proud of me. When she passed I had no idea how I would make it from one day to another. I had no idea how that emptiness and pain would ever lessen it's intensity. When I was at my lowest point I realized Mandy wouldn't want me to be so sad. She wouldn't want me to stop living. She would want me to be happy and laugh and enjoy my life. I remembered all the times she told me she didn't want me to be alone. She worried that I wouldn't have anyone to take care of me. I struggled with moving on with my life for awhile but, as hard as it was I have done that. I am happy and enjoying the gift of my life. No matter what happens now I will never forget her or what she did for me. I will always love her, por vida.
     I have always believed and continue to believe that Mandy was my soul mate. I called her my guardian angel because so many times during our friendship she had done things I didn't know about to try to keep me from getting hurt by someone I was dating or talking to. When we went out she always protected me and watched out for me. I know she is still looking out for me now. In another post, I will talk more about signs and repeat this story so I hope you will bare with me.
     I have always believed in "signs" and that belief has only grown stronger. Not long after Mandy passed away I met a woman. I felt a strong connection to her from the moment we started to talk. Our first date was a blind date for me because she knew what I looked like but, I had no idea what she looked like. I have never been one to dwell on looks but, I was concerned I wouldn't know who she was and possibly embarrass myself and I believe in first impressions. Driving to the restaurant she suggested, my heart was pounding like crazy and my hands were shaking. I had to tell myself out loud to calm down and remind myself it was just dinner. As I walked up to the restaurant, I saw her sitting in a chair outside where it was a little chilly. Something about the way she looked struck a familiar chord in me. She looked sad and lonely and I found myself wanting to comfort her. I thought she's just like me. I knew that she would be someone important in my life.
     As we talked, I told her about Mandy and what I was going through. She listened to me and made me feel as if she really understood my pain. While I appreciated having someone to talk to I felt as if I was doing most of the talking so, I asked her to tell me about herself. She told me that she did understand the pain of losing someone because she had lost a brother recently. I offered my condolences and she told me her story. I listened just as she had done with me but, the whole time I had this question I felt I needed to ask. I asked if she wouldn't mind telling me when her brother had passed. She said, July 11, 2012. My heart seemed to stop because Mandy had passed July 12, 2012. That knowledge didn't seem to affect her as it did me but, something inside me told me that it was important. As I write about it now, there is a chill up my spine and neck.
     When we left that night, I knew that she and I would end up together. I still struggled with moving on because it hadn't yet been a year since Mandy's passing. Mandy had asked me a few times to wait at least a year before becoming involved in a new relationship and the last thing I would ever want to do is hurt Mandy. The more time this woman and I spent together, the more connected we became. She was polite, respectful, kind and generous. She didn't mind that I talked about Mandy all the time. She even encouraged me to get my feelings out in the open. One night after we had gone out I was home alone when it suddenly hit me, what am I doing? What am I waiting for? Here is this wonderful person who cares about me and wants to be with me, someone who makes me smile. A woman who told me she had been alone for a long time and searching for the right person. She said that one of her sisters always said she wished she could find someone because she didn't want her to be alone anymore.  I thought about her brother and the date of his death and Mandy's and it hit me, how did I know that her brother and Mandy hadn't been watching over us and decided to bring us together? That's when I knew I couldn't let this chance to be happy again slip away. So many times during my relationship with Mandy I always said, "Some people search a lifetime to find what we have, and some people never find it." We always considered ourselves lucky and blessed and here was a chance for me to find love again.
     Today is exactly one year since Mandy's passing and while my heart is aching and my mind is filled with memories of  her and the life we shared, I feel so blessed that I have Irene to help me get through it. We have each other.