Posted by: carolyn / through a widow's eyes | October 5, 2014

but who’s counting

 

You know those lists of Abandoned Properties you see in the paper every so often? And you wonder how people could just walk away from their bank accounts?

This morning I casually opened an innocuous looking envelope. The letter inside contained a stern “statement of inactivity” warning about a small mutual fund savings account Jeff and I held jointly, back in the day. (The day in which he was alive.) I remember I tried to cash it out shortly after he died, and there were a million hoops they wanted me to jump through, involving death certificates and driving to banks and getting papers notarized, and at the time there was just no way, so I never did. It’s maybe $350 in question, which has been gathering interest at the rate of something like .00000001% ever since.

There’s a letter you can send back indicating that the account is active, but it requires both signatures. While forgery is indeed one of my many skills, I just don’t have the heart. There’s a phone number you can call, but I went down that rabbit hole once already years ago, and I ain’t going back. There is a website, so I went there. I had to type in his social security number, which I still have emblazoned on my brain from all the horrible paperwork I did around his medical insurance, SSI disability, and so on.

So I did that and the account is now active, yay? and I didn’t even cry and I still might not, or maybe I will. The morning that dawned fine is now gone in the blink of an eye, at least for now. It has been five years and two months and 18 days, and it STILL sucks. I was going to share this sad little vignette on a private widowed peoples’ site, where they know whereof I speak, but instead I am putting it here. You’re welcome, haha.

And if you are married or have someone you dearly love in your life, I want you to get up right now and go give that person a hug. From me.

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