• Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google +

A surprising letter

A surprising letter - Barbara Johnson

Today when I returned from my health club Mississauga, I noted I had mail. I received a letter from BMO Life Assurance Company. It was addressed to my step-mother. She had given my address since she is no longer residing at her former address. 
After my dad’s funeral she announced everyone that she wanted to return to Sri Lanka. Everyone was surprised to hear that, given that she had never expressed her wish to go back to her homeland. Though, no one had anything to add or question to her statement. They all thought that she needed time to mourn the death of her husband. They imagined that she needed to go away, to spend some time alone, to recollect some memories, to get used to the idea that he was gone for good. 

What we did not expect was to have her leaving the following day after his burial. We all believed that her departure was going to be somewhere in spring or summer. When she called me and said she was in the airport, I did not realized that she was the one leaving. I thought she was giving a ride to one of the relatives who had attended the funeral. 

Anyway, point is that she called to ask if she could use my address for her mail. I agreed without even asking why she needed it. Only when she added that her plane was leaving in two hours, I realized she was travelling. I confessed to her that I was a bit surprised by her sudden decision of travelling to Sri Lanka. She replied saying that she would be staying there with her relatives for a few months, maybe until August or September. 

Before I asked anything, she mentioned that her apartment was empty, she had put all of her things in storage. She asked me to open her mail and take a photo of her letters and then email them to her. I did not mind. If she trusted me with this task, that was the least I could do for her. 

Once I got back into the house, I opened the letter from the insurance company. It was a form : Claimant’s statement - Proof of death. 
When I saw it my eyes got teary and I felt I needed to sit down. I got overwhelmed. So far I thought I handled well my dad’s passing, that I did not have that devastating or crushing feeling of losing a loved one. I was wrong. I did not allow myself to process the thoughts properly. All this time I was in denial, if I could say that.


The author:


Barbara Johnson is a Ontario businesswoman, speaker and blogger specializing in social networking strategies. She holds a Master of Science in ECommerce from the University of Toronto.