After my husband died, each of his three sons came to me to ask if they could have his Rolex watch.
The fact that there are 3 boys and only one watch and I had bought it for him as a Christmas gift, I told each of them that I would rather keep it myself.
It broke my heart to turn them down. They were hurting just as bad as I was. They lost their dad/best friend/boss after all.
It was a decision I would later regret....
After my husband died, I had moved, re-arranged my life, made adjustments. Learned to cope.
I paid off my house, moved, bought two cars, made decisions I hadn't had to make in many years. My husband did it all.
He was gone.
I had to have some small construction done in my Florida home. I hired a crew to do the work. All was going ok.
The house seemed alive with people.
The men were in and out of my house every day beginning at 7:00 a.m. to end of day.
One of the men from the construction crew saw and remarked on my husbands beautiful watch.
"Wow, that's one pretty watch." He declared when he saw it as he passed through the Master Suite where I had placed it the night before.
I made a quick mental note to hide it in the house or to take it to my safe deposit box.... The landline phone rang... the conversation forgotten as I ran to answer it in the bustle of the buzzing saws and hammering noises of the construction going on in the next room.
That night, as I lay in bed reflecting on the happenings of the day, I remembered and as I raced to check on it, the watch was gone! Gone!
Disappeared from the place it was just that morning.
My heart sank.
I immediately called the police.
A flood of regret washed over me. My beautiful husband's watch on another man's arm? Lost? Missing.
I felt so broken.
Why hadn't I given it to one of the boys? At least then it would be safe. Treasured. Still in the hands of those that love my husband not some stranger.
Sadly, the police took my information, filed a report and told me they would do what they could to trace it if it showed up in a pawn shop but warned me that the chances were slim of ever getting it back.
The owner of the construction company had nothing to offer in the way of help either. I had no proof. There was only my suspicion that the young man that had asked about it had actually taken it.
My chances of ever seeing that watch again were slim to none.
I felt so hopeless.
I can't do anything right!
Who allows their deceased husband's watch to be stolen from their own home????
I had many things of my husband's that evoked so many sweet memories of him but I could squeeze my eyes shut real tight and SEE that watch on his big strong arm when he was alive and healthy.
The bright shiny gold would glitter in the sun as we would walk hand in hand into church on a beautiful Sunday morning. Out to dinner and I would see it on his wrist in the dim light of a candlelit restaurant as he reached across the table to grasp my hand. Every night I would see it on his side of the bed carefully placed on the night stand ready to be worn to the office as he rushed out the door.
Weeks passed then months. No word from the Florida State Police Department. Nothing.
Not a day passed by that I would not think of my husband and his missing watch. It was eating my soul to know I had let it slip away.
My husband's birthday was approaching. May 6.
His first birthday away from me. All I could do was cry.
I miss him so much. Every day.
May 6, 2013
I went to the cemetery in the morning. As I stood there in the early light of the beautiful spring day, I told my husband what had happened. Explained my stupidity. Not just about the watch but many other stupid things I have done in the months since he passed.
I slowly drove home. Going to the cemetery was my way of going to "visit" my husband and it always made me feel sad but slightly better to know he was lying there waiting for me... someday.
We share a headstone.
When I arrived home, my phone rang.
Pinellas County Police Department.
They found the watch!!!
What? Really? How?
The person that stole it had posted it for sale on Craigslist.
It was posted at 11:30 p.m. and it was recovered by midnight and on it's way back to me via USPS overnight.
I got my husband's precious watch back and will watch over it like it's Fort Knox from now on.
I don't believe that the deceased can see ALL we do but I believe they do know what is bothering us.
To get that watch returned at all was a miracle. To get it back on my husband's birthday confirms that to me. I was beating my self up every single day for letting it slip away from me.
Rest in Peace Sweet Henry. Every second that ticks by on your precious watch reminds me of you.
I love and miss you so much.
Here is the Craigslist posting that the police were able to trace to the stolen watch: