And Now You Know

Posted in The Widow's Blog | 0 comments

And Now You Know

After being married to my soulmate, Frank, for twenty-nine years, on January 30, 1997, I suddenly became a widow. At the time of Frank’s sudden death, we owned and operated a Florist together in Bay City, Texas, and Frank also worked full time for Phillips 66 Refinery in Old Ocean, Texas.

Frank and I lived in Sweeny, Texas, which is located about twenty-two miles from Bay City. Even though loving owning the florist and designing flowers, in the Summer of 1998, I decided to sale the florist, which would allow me to be closer to our home.

Two weeks after selling the Florist, I was contacted and offered a job as a receptionist in a Doctor’s office in Sweeny, Texas. I worked there for a year then apply at Walmart in West Columbia, Texas to manage the Garden Center and then a year later was offered a job in the Pharmacy in Walmart. At the age of fifty, I studied, took an exam, and passed it to become a Certified Registered Pharmacy Technician.

I retired from Walmart Pharmacy in October of 2009 at the age of sixty. For the next five years, I spent my time working on our home, doing all of the yard work and attending all of the activities of my Grandchildren.

At the end of January of 2015, eighteen years after Frank’s death and at the age of sixty-five, I decided to have a little talk with God about His purpose for me. That night I had a dream, and in that dream, Frank came to me telling me to look in The Cedar Chest. Immediately, I sat up in bed, wondering what Frank was trying to tell me

The Cedar Chest

I have a cedar chest in my home, but I knew exactly what was in it, so I laid back down, trying to go back to sleep. Suddenly, I sat back up in bed because I remembered that there was an old Cedar Chest in my storage building in my backyard. No matter how hard I tried, there was no memory for me of what was in that Cedar Chest. Since it was dark outside, I made a cup of coffee then went to sit on my patio.

First light, I went to the backyard, opened the shed, uncovered the cedar chest, and opened it. On the right-hand side inside the chest was a large white box with a slide-on lid. When I opened the box, it was full of letters. Since there was not enough light in the shed, I put the top back on the box then carried the box into my home.

After sitting the box on my dining room table, I got another cup of coffee then sat down in a dining room chair, opened the box, took out a letter then noticed that the envelope was addressed to me with a return address to Frank from Phu Bai while he was in Vietnam in 1971.

I laid the letter on the table then carefully went through the box and realized that all of the letters were from Frank to me while he was in Vietnam in 1971. Not knowing that these letters still existed and that they were forty-four years old, I was surprised and tearful.

Rereading each letter through the eyes of a sixty-five-year-old widow instead of a twenty-one-year-old worried wife, was surreal. The feeling of the fear of losing my young husband mixed with the emotions of grief of having lost him twenty-six years later, but the love for me that came from Frank’s handwritten letters brought me so much comfort. The last letter I read had slid under the other letters, and it was the letter with a message in it from Frank to me.

“Our love was like new wine. It’s still wine, but it’s weak. Once it’s been aged and tested, it’s not only wine but a great wine. The same holds true with our love. It’s aged and been tested over and over, and now it’s perfection. Can you understand what I’m trying to say? I’m trying to tell you. I love you so much. I’m trying to tell you that Honey, we are one and nothing will ever part us again. Not death or anything else. Our love is a forever thing, and it’s the most beautiful forever thing God has ever created. I’m trying to convey my love to you through this paper and pen. I only hope you can understand how I feel and realize what I’m trying to say to you. I love you, Nancy.”

Frank wanted me to know that he was always with me even after death. I placed the letter back into its envelope then decided to get out my old electric typewriter and type them all, which I thought would make them easier for my son and grandchildren to read.

While typing the letters, stories of the fun things that Frank and I did together in all of the places that we had lived, came flooding to my mind. Thinking that those stories would be fun to share with my family, I typed each story as I remembered it. These stories did not come with any kind of order, so later I put them in order sequencing them by each town where we had lived.

Initially, I thought that the letters and stories would be in a binder for just my son and grandchildren, but God had another plan and purpose. While typing the letters and stories, I decided to share some of them on my personal Facebook page, and so many people told me that this was a book about a Christian marriage dealing with commitment, communication, sacrifice, unselfishness, and true love and that should be shared with others.

So here I am four years later at the young age of sixty-nine with a website https://nancylouhenderson.com where I am sharing every chapter of this Memoir and an Author Facebook page, Nancy Lou Henderson

The Memoir is very large, so it has been split into a series of four books. The first two books have been published, Love & Marriage: The Love Story of Nancy & Frank: Book I and War & Commitment: The Love Story of Nancy & Frank: Book II. They are available in paperbacks and ebooks on Amazon and Barnes & Noble and Autographed Books on Website.

Thank you for reading my chapters and your Beautiful support.
God Bless You,
Nancy Lou

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