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Dear Caroline,

I’m sitting in the waiting room, waiting for news on how my mom’s procedure went. I hate when they put her under. She has such a hard time with anesthesia. 

I’m looking around at couples and helpers of all different races, ages, walks of life. I’m studying faces while trying to be inconspicuous and non creepy.

Then I smile to myself. When we are old and our health fails, I’ll be right here, in this chair, in this waiting room, waiting for you.

I’ll hold your hand when they start your IVs. I’ll kiss your forehead when you have a fever. I’ll help you back and forth from the bathroom or with the bed pan, whatever you need. I’ll bring you soft foods, soups and Jell-O. I’ll lay my head on your chest or stomach and tell you how much I love you. I’ll rub Vicks Vapo-Rub on your chest and back when you have a cold, start your hot baths when your muscles ache. I’ll brush your gray hair back from your forehead and kiss your cheek.

I can’t wait to take care of you. To always be right there when you need me.

I can’t wait to climb into bed together as little old ladies and hold each other, our skin papery and wrinkled, our hair gray, our breaths short and wheezy. When arthritis has morphed my hands into something else and I can barely squeeze your hand back and my knuckles are too swollen to ever take my wedding rings off.

I look forward to that adventure with you, my darling. As long as you’ll have me.