Ghosts

15 10 2007

When I was a child, before the advent of the Internet, I had several pen-pals living throughout the United States. Once I reached high school I became concerned with what was “cool” and stopped writing – what if anyone found out? I wrote letters all of the time to them and to my relatives. I loved to get the mail (and I still do) because it was always a mystery what would be in the mailbox each day.

Letter writing is a lost art. I haven’t received a letter (aside from the “Christmas letter” that some people put in their cards) in a very long time.

Until last week, when I received a most unwelcome letter, from an ex-boyfriend who is now in prison!

Now that I think about this relationship, it couldn’t have lasted longer than a few months. He was not an upstanding citizen at that time. I had not learned at that time that you cannot change people. In fact, the relationship ended when both my mother and I were both questioned by the police department for stealing a purse from a church. You see, he had borrowed my car which was at that time in my mother’s name. And for those of you who actually know me and my mother you can image how traumatic it was for my mother to go through this. I’m sure she had her doubts about me at that time.

The letter didn’t say much – just that he had been in prison since 2001 and he hoped that I didn’t hate him. What a wasted of a life- he has been in there for six years. It really bugs me that this capable person can’t be a productive contributing member of society.

I think the last time I talked to this person was 1997. He must have been desperate for a pen-pal, to think of me all of these years later. I was so disgusted by hearing from him that I tore the letter into hundreds of little pieces and threw it into the garbage.

I was so worried about telling my husband about the letter – especially since my initial reaction was to tear the letter up and throw it away. I thought he wouldn’t like me anymore or wonder what kind of person he had married, to have an ex boyfriend who is now in prison. He wasn’t pleased, but I’m pretty sure he still likes me – and I know I still like him, productive member of society that he is.

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