4 years old: my father tells me I’m too needy, too clingy, too sensitive. He leaves my mother and me.
10 years old: my best friend Josh tells me I cry too much. He leaves me.
16 years old: my first boyfriend dumps me for my “best” friend, after telling me she’s tough and more fun.
23 years old: my first husband leaves me, saying he can’t handle tiptoeing around my issues anymore.
38 years old: my second husband storms out, telling me to call him when I’ve grown up and stopped being so sensitive.
40 years old: my boyfriend leaves after I tell him how much I love him, saying it’s too much.
47 years old: I don’t cry anymore. I can’t even remember how.
78 years old: My third husband died this morning. I think it hurts, but I’m too distant.
89 years old: I will die today, I can tell. I tell my children to be strong, stoic. No tears. They nod, they know. I’ve never told them how much I love them; I hope they know.