Money, property, assets – the spouse who wants power and control will feel he has it the more he pulls the wool over your eyes -i.e. hides, steals and otherwise abandons fiduciary responsibility. This story is true, and made a huge difference in my life.
THE RING STING (yes, THAT ring)
MY COSMIC TRUST FUND
“If we worked on the assumption that what is accepted as true reality is true, then there would be little hope for advance.” — Orville Wright
Starting with a Definition (which I have found to be useful placeholders for navigating spacetime)
“A Trust Fund is a legal entity that holds property or assets for a person or organization. A trust can hold a variety of assets, such as money, real property, stocks, bonds, a business, or a combination of assets.”
I have a Cosmic Trust Fund. It includes a diamond engagement ring, a handwritten personal letter to me from former Vice-President Hubert Humphrey, proceeds from a house on Windmill Hill Mountain, a house and barn on 3 acres in Putney Vermont, 300 mountain acres, 15 years of unpaid child support, monies paid to release the lien on the Windmill Hill house and unpaid medical insurance. Wow, you must be thinking, one rich boomer. Except I am not. All of the above remain in the quantum field of invisibility. Why? Because I failed to see it right in front of me.
Do I expect it all? Hell no. Unless the cosmos needs to align damages with reparations, this situation remains. I’ll simply remember my old friend Euripides who says; “Waste not fresh tears over old griefs.” So I’ll throw out everything but the Ring Sting. (explanation coming in a few paragraphs – hold on)
Why Cosmic? Because all of the above remain in the field of possibility and like our universe, is ever expanding with interest. Ok, I can hear you saying, unicorns also live in the possibility field. That’s ok. I live for unicorns.
I appointed the cosmos to act as Trustee because obviously I am no good at it.
People ask me: “How did you pay rent and buy food and clothe the kids broke and with no support?” Two guesses and their special kind of stupid erases them from my close friend list. I went to work.
Ok, not very nice, delete above line. You never read it. I’m going to code for version B anyway. This is the existential, quantum approach: there is a good reason I got screwed. It was to prepare me for the next marital financial crisis. (It began, “I owe you a lot of money.” Me: “Why?” “Because I lied to you and hid income and kept a double set of books and made you use your inheritance to pay expenses.” But that’s another slice of life story.) The Cosmic Trust Fund is busy expanding like the universe. Wow, I have 2 trust funds? How lucky does one girl get?
“We are all captives of a story.” —— Daniel Quinn, author of Ishmael
I must have believed in eternity as in the Eternal Flame (yes there is such a thing. You don’t know what it is? So google it or hijack a rabbi.) What do I mean? I mean if I am good enough, work hard enough, do what is expected, be a good girl, say please and thank you, I will be rewarded and the monies (at least the ring money, promised deeply, passionately over decades ago) will be returned.
I was The Eternal Idiot living in the world of eternal hope. And then I had an epiphany represented by this quote: “Everyone else is waiting for eternity and the shamans say, “How About Tonight?”
Indeed how about tonight? Also called, NOW. Well, you could call it now as in how now brown cow or the very popular The Power of Now (Eckhart Tolle), aka the Present and if I got the trust to disperse just one asset it would indeed be a present.
This is now. Dear Denny; remember how you fed me a story of how the ring was a family heirloom and your mother PROMISED, absolutely swore, she would pay me for the ring. She just had to have it, payment was not a problem. The ring had history, who was I to break the family tradition? Well, the ring had a history in my life too as in Denny fell out of love with a woman wearing the ring, took it back and gave it to me because I, not she, was the love of his life. So we married and had our babies.
Fast forward, kitchen, Putney house: I clearly see me standing there agreeing “Oh sure, the ring can go back to your family and thank your mom for paying me for it.”
I call that Shakespearean. (Where is Billy when I need him? Back in every junior and senior high literature class I guess. Rise, Bill, rise from yonder grave and write my story so I can be shoved in the face of every 9th grader. Ok, kids, you are spared, stick with A Midsummer’s Night Dream, because this one might be entitled A Midsummer’s Nightmare.)
I always thought I’d get the monies promised. I took off for life and all its adventures thinking “Ethel will keep her word, the money is coming.” I really believed it.
Over the years a disappointment with Ethel developed. (Could have been between working as a tutor, going back to school, research assistant for Stanford professor, co-authoring journal article with same Professor, leading poetry therapy at holistic medical clinic in Palo Alto, waitressing, Director of Sales and Product Training at computer retail headquarters, Editor, sat on Board of Directors at a non-profit, co-founding tour company, ok, you get the picture. Humble bragging rant over and done. I’m exhausted recollecting the list and realize the energy of youth is a hugely underappreciated asset while being expended.)
Which leads me to: there is more to life than “it sucks and then you die”. There is Jeff. Jeff liked my ring story which begins with a huge engagement party for Denny and Allison and The Eternal Idiot (that’s me, remember?) had no idea they were a couple. I found out about the party and the engagement and Allison on one eventful Saturday morning. A trifecta of misery. That night was the party. I went.
This is what Jeff brings to the story now officially named The Ring Sting: insight. He nailed it: “Your MIL paid for the ring and Denny kept the money.” And like a clarion call to Reality I knew he was right. It was obvious, it was right in front of me and I had ignored this powerful insight which designed the reality field in which I lived and parented and struggled for the next 15 years. Denny started several businesses at this time, e.g. he took the 300 acres, divided them into separate properties and sold them. He also started a log cabin franchise company, still in existence. What Jeff so clearly saw I was blinded to. Thanks to Jeff for this reality bite. It has been duly noted and will be added to my Wrapping Up a Boomer Life website. A gut punch, yes, but eye opening events often are.
How do I make this better? My usual escape: words. I will label myself a Venture Capitalist because my funds built the log cabin empire. I will live off the fame and glory inherent in the VC title and hang with Sergey, Elon, Peter, Amazon Jeff, and go to Davos so I can see that there really does exist a creature named Klaus Schaub. I suppose I need to stop making fun of his famous line: “By 2030 you will own nothing and be happy”, because I own nothing already and talk myself into happiness all the time. (In case I don’t make it to 2030, remember, Be Happy.)
As I wrap up this life journey with the physical body I ask: Debts and Regrets? Well, yes. I regret I was The Eternal Idiot still living on the land of Eternal Hope. Had I done what Any Normal would have done and contacted Ethel, life might have had a different context. More time with the kids for one. But the regrets are few – a biggie is the missed Rolling Stones concert that I won free tix for. But I was so broke that half a grapefruit was dinner so I did what any Mick Jagger devotee would never do: I sold the tickets and fed the kids. The regret is not that I fed the kids but didn’t have The Insight of Jeff. And so I missed standing in front of Mick hearing him sing “I can’t get no satisfaction.” The lyrics matched my reality field and I tried and I tried and I tried.
Dear Cosmic Trust: I only want one thing, the ring or the money. I’ve paid the price for being The Eternal Idiot and promises pledged should be promises met. Please tell me, where is the ring? Geolocate it for me, send it to Apple maps and Siri will be there for me, or just throw the $ owed into a BTC account. Find Denny (or someone,anyone) who knows and can right Reality. The Ring Sting remains unresolved except that Jeff has my gratitude for sharing his insight into human nature. As I wrap up this journey called Life I’m hoping there might be a resolution to 50 years of waiting in the wings of The Eternal Idiots Hall of Fame so I don’t lose more into the grab happy Cosmic Trust.
But before I go I call out the optimism gene and quote Cormac McCarthy:
“You never know what worse luck your bad luck has saved you from.”