More often than not when the words “soul mate” are uttered the assumption by the listener is the person saying those words is talking about their spouse or perhaps their boyfriend or girlfriend in a romantic relationship. Well I’m here to dispel that assumption. I am going to tell you about my soul mate, her name was Kathryn and though breast cancer got the better of her going on eight years ago, she is still and will forever continue to be my “soul mate”.
Having said that, I need to clarify that when I first met Kathryn she was anything but my soul mate as far as I was concerned. In fact, I tried everything I could to avoid the woman. She and her husband were members of a sister church to ours and good friends to a woman who I had become close to as well. Looking back I can see how our relationship was inevitable but when I met them, within moments I had determined I would never see this couple and their precious one year old daughter again if I could help it. Kathryn and her husband were as mismatched as any two people could be. Where she was dark and sultry and sensuous and possessed the demeanor, thought processes and actions of a fairy sprite, he was blond, Nordic, stiff as a stick and I think his middle name is actually “control”. I won’t go into a lot of detail here about what their relationship was like except to say that it lasted through four more children, a move from the big city to a farm on an island here in Washington State, and a miscarriage that almost killed her. Then she found someone and had an affair with them because, as she explained to me when I asked, “he was nice to me”. Needless to say that was the downfall of their marriage, at least for her husband who wasn’t amused. Enough said about their relationship.
Getting back to my desire to avoid her, well one day, several years after our first meeting, I got a call from her. Another friend of ours (the traitor) had told her I knew how to wallpaper and Kathryn was asking me if I would please come and help her do a job. I tried every nice way I could think of to get out of saying yes, but the magic that fairies have, you just can’t resist them! That phone call started a 25 year long relationship that was one of the greatest joys and adventures of my life until it ended on January 1, 2003 at 4:00 am when she finally lost the fight with breast cancer and went home to be with God.
Neither one of us expected that we would become what we became to each other. We didn’t know that we would end up naturally looking out for each other, reaching out when we needed help even though we were many miles away and hadn’t communicated. All we knew was when we were together, something amazing happened. We took care of each other, thought more about what the other needed or wanted than ourselves, we completed each other in a way neither one of us could explain. Others saw it too, many of them misinterpreting it as something unnatural but we always knew what it was and cherished every moment we had because we knew it was rare. We were the modern, female version of David and Jonathan in the bible and it’s unlikely I will ever have the privilege of ever experiencing that again. But that’s okay, because it is the story I carry around in my heart, it’s the shining gem that I can bring out and show to those who want to hear about it and to show to myself to remind myself of how lucky I was that she came into my life. It’s also a reminder of how valiantly she struggled to stay alive and raise her children and how brave she was right up to the very end and how I will never, ever forget her.