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Who’s the last person you saw before reading this prompt? Whether it’s a family member, a coworker, or a total stranger, write a post about what that person is thinking right now.

Since the last person I saw today, while I was still in my pajamas, was my husband, and I’ve already used him in several posts and nothing has changed, I’m going to write about a my first phone call of the day, and what that person was thinking right after the call — and probably still thinking about it.

The phone rang and I had 15 minutes before I had to leave for yoga. I didn’t recognize the number, but I did notice the prefix was from my sister’s area of the country, so I answered it fearing I may be about to be confronted by charity/political plea or the offer of a free visit if I look at their timeshares. Thankfully it was my sister who was calling from a phone at the a house where she’s house/two-dog sitting so her friends can visit their son. (70-year old folks.) She’s nice like that.

It’s unusual for her to call me early in the day and she said she had news. In that split second I considered the possibilities, mostly bad. She read my mind and said “It’s good news”, so I relaxed. She wanted to share that she’d just passed a state exam covering the regulations and laws a pharmacy technician should know. It was hard, she shared, and she really thought she’d flunked it until her score came up after she pressed “Submit”. The is the second difficult exam she’s had to study for and take for her certification — and now she’s qualified!

My sister and I are very different, but close now as adults, as we were not when we were kids with nearly a 7-year age gap between us. When I left to study in Scotland in 1967, my widowed mom moved from Ohio to Florida where she’d be closer to her parents, so Barb went to high school in Florida. She fell in love and got married at 19 or 20, and had her first baby perhaps two years later. I got married when I was 23 after college graduation, and we didn’t have children until we were thirty.

When her husband passed away after 5 years of fighting cancer, she was left with very little, except wonderful supportive children, their husbands, and 5 super grandchildren. She, like me, had been a stay-at-home mom, even more important when her second daughter was born with a birth defect that required many surgeries and lots of care. Subsequently she got her boy (we have one each), who’s hardly that now at about 6’3″ and a couple of hundred pounds (like mine). Her only real work had been in her husband successful business where she was definitely a partner, each of them doing what she/he did best. When the business failed due to his illness, she was unemployed, and untrained for other work.

She’s struggled a lot over the past five years, but always with a positive attitude, no “why me God”, or resentments. She’s worked most of that time, and basically enjoys working in the pharmacy of a drug store chain, and is great with the customers because of her sunny disposition. Now she’s taken the next big step: studied hard, wondered if she could do it, and passed both exams the first time she took them. I’m so proud of her, and know how much she worries about the future. This will help not only with increased pay, but with the knowledge that she can succeed, learn new things, and achieve more.

I’m know she’s feeling pretty proud now, and very relieved. And despite the fact that losing her husband wasn’t her choice, I imagine she’s feeling good about making a life for herself, on her own. And I’m sure she’s telling him about it in her prayers tonight and I know he, too, will be proud of her.

God bless my sister!