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Could I Forgive Him One Last Time?

2022-08-03 | 🔗

When Victoria Rosner was seven months pregnant, her husband filed for divorce. He “decided that he couldn’t be married anymore, not to me, he said, and probably not to anyone,” Victoria wrote in her Modern Love essay.

A couple of years later, while they were living many miles apart, he reached out to her with a request. He had been diagnosed with a cancer that had metastasized to his bones, and he wanted to spend the time he had left with Judah, their young son. Victoria had to make a complicated decision: to forgive her ex and allow him into Judah’s life, or to close the door on Judah’s relationship with his father, possibly forever. 

On our season finale, we listen to Victoria’s story about forgiveness. Then, our host, Anna Martin, checks in with Judah, who is now 16. Judah reflects on what he remembers about his father — and the impact of the powerful choice his mother made years ago.

This is our last episode of the summer. We’re taking a little break, but we’ll be back in the fall with a whole new lineup of stories. We hope you’ll join us.

This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
What does sex dot com have figures summer vacation the best be Households, gifts from mackenzie, childs, an life size, pull toys for the kids, sack Welcome even has worked out gear for sunrise beach walks and for sunset, happy hour, there's baccarat cocktail, glasses and Zimmermann cocktail. Dresses, you'll always find curated shops at saxo com for the best summer, swimwear sandals and even us, bf plus there's free shipping and free returns every day at sacks outcome. Now, in a strong- and I love you- I can see from the new york times I'm anna Martin. This is modern love. this week's as he begins in a space of clarity
a man at the end of his life, knows exactly who he wants to spend his remaining time with, but It's not up to him Ex wife needs to decide if she'll let him honestly. This essay broke my heart and it filled out right back up. At the exact same time, it's called Could I forgive him one last time written. victoria, rosner and read by Frankie corso, I was dropping off my son at preschool his Teacher asked me for a private chat made it out. Our club, from fish died yesterday. I thought you of all people should now. Concern wasn't swimming wonderful. as he was John you, death the tender topic for judah.
a year earlier Judas far had gone to the doktor for what he saw. It was I Attica but turned out. To be cancer that had metastasize to his bones. Was fifty one at the time. judah was too but that's only part of the story, until the time of the diagnosis judah and his father hadn't seen much of each other some time between Judas conception and delivery, his foot? third decided that he couldn't be married anymore, not to me he said and probably not to anyone and Texas, where we were living it turned. To be illegal to divorce your wife while she was pregnant, so although Filed for divorce during my seventh month, we still legally married on the day, Judah was born,
therefore the birth and dropped in on us for visits, but a few months later, I moved back to new york city more, Family left. Two years later, Judas father still in texas, and I was still in new york when he found out The cancer, though he called me. I haven't heard his voice in a while. It sounded strained expressed sympathy about his illness but Wasn't what he wanted to talk about. I mean I ask you something he said. I had always plan to have a relationship with judah when he was a little older, but now I dont, know if that can happen. I want to start seeing him more as much can right away.
And came out. I may not be able to travel, but I'd like to. How to judah on the phone every night and Maybe have you bring him to visit me. In some ways So what I long to here since Judas birth. Maybe now Judah and his father could have a relationship and I could have a partner and parenthood. That was my first thought. I also had to consider that the worst might come to pass in which I would have exposed Judah two significant and avoidable pain. Now he didn't know his father. Any loss would be. Would be than rather, personal, but if he came to love his father who's. Him lose him
had the makings of either a miracle or a tragedy. It was hard to predict which. I found myself thinking about what I would say to an older judah long after Father had died, Would have a lot of questions about a man and a relationship he couldn't fully remember, I suspect, did that the grown up judo would want to have known all he could about his father. I said yes, and so their meetings began. He fly, used and stay with my mother for three or four days they came. Therapy was immune to suppress it, so he enjoyed a mostly state in the apartment doing two year old, stuff. Singing snacking tickling. to sandy haired starkey brown, I'd guys rolling around on the floor.
Called me from the airport after the first visit and said he is the most incredible child that has ever lived. Do you realize that. I said I didn't I hung up feeling as if I've been handed a gift for the first time I felt he was speaking unequivocally as Judas father and that we were joined in our love of our amazing son,. Initially Judah, wasn't sure who this guy was he's done? thou calling him by his first name. Willingly made the switch to daddy Eventually, he took delight and the word and would spring to the phone yelling hi daddy into the receiver over The next few months we watched us, daddy lost his hair and grow weaker. He taking large doses of morphine, but still frequently winston pain. Judah was solicitous.
I heard him ask dad Are you sick, I'm fine and going to get better. I squirmed I knew it was what he needed to say I wasn't sure it was what judah needed to hear tat. And after the diagnosis, the hospital cod telling me that it didn't look good. Sat down with judah sweetheart daddy's very sick and I'm afraid he might die, stress felt his eyes. I dont want daddy to die. I to see him. I don't want him to die either. I'm going to go to the hospital now and I'll, tell him what you said. He was in a coma. When I arrived. But I held his hand and did tell him
I sat there and talked to him as Judas fellow parent about power and for our sons future though I knew he probably couldn't hear me and certainly could an answer, died two days later. I Judah was angry and sad at the news, but mostly uncomprehending. He kept asking one daddy, would stop dying and come back to us. It was my miserable task to tell him never and witnesses disappointment. I felt as if his grief was my fault, in a way it was I had opened the door now three judah still doesn't believe and forever
and keep trying to find a work around, for that. Maybe daddy is that that hotel, where I saw him once or maybe he's in California. Frustrated that he can't see his father, though one night when he was lying in bed, I told him he could talk to him whenever he likes. It was quiet for a moment, called upward daddy. How are you Is it dark where you are. Jude memories of his father may fade, but for an hour well. He enjoys them. Every time he passes a mcdonald's, he says I wonder my daddy right or He plays with a favorite toy. My daddy gave that to me right Judah, often talks, philosophy,
as casually to a friend of my mother's. You know we're all going to die He wants to know the feasibility of the two of us dying together. I'm going to come see when I die. He tells me. I assure him that he and I won't die for a very long time. Why He heard me on the phone to a girlfriend. Exclaiming I could have died then, and there and he went white mommy don't say that he shrieked don't say that. I wondered how judah would react when he heard about slim is death, a priest, glum and asked john to let me know here Where did that when he told the children what had happened? One valid feared that her grandmother had died. Another said he had a fish that died, a very old fish,
The class agreed that swimming had been an older fish too. an judah said: My daddy died later. another child approach, Judah and asked in a worried voice. Your daddy to Judah nodded Does that mean he's not coming back. Judah put his hand on the other child. Shoulder yes, but it's ok. He said. I'm alive here alive want to play. hmm The Judo was three at the end of that essay after the break. We meet him
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yeah. What kind of stunned when Judah walked into the studio with his mom Victoria. This is w q exile, the teenager have, of course, Logically, I knew I wasn't interviewing the three year old from his mother's essay, but Judah was just so big. He's sixteen now and his tall in that specific teenager, a kind of way where it don't like his own height surprises him. You know he moves in this way where he still further
bring himself out, and if you guys wanna, put yourself put yourself down, get a drink water. The bathroom reminds me of reminds me of my aspirations of being a wanted, always want to be this way really working around some beats right. Now we settled in an victoria sat down next, you judah close closer, to hold his hand, was deafening was here to talk to me about was really intense and she air for support Jude in I started off with the basics: jude Thank you so much for coming into the studio. it's summer, so I feel like there's a lot of other places you could be. I did just get home from boarding school, so you wait. Okay, that's the question of my what grade are you in? I just finished it's horizons. Rising junior how many years has been since your dad passed over thirteen And what do you remember about your dad to this there? I can no longer remember what his voice sounds like vividly, but I have
memories of certain things that he said of them. They certain things we did together some that we're photographed that helps enforceable. Some that weren't I have sometimes presented just have. me about some of those memories. What something you remember doing with your dad. The most vivid memories have is of him talking to Heaven moms dog. They was brisket. I remember him me standing there him telling brisket. Sit down twice. Very vividly to sing brisket sit down, brisket sit down in that exact cadence. I can so kind of sea the image of my head, but it's really distorted. I know it existed. I don't remember the directly, it's more, that I remember remembering it I'll that concept. The memory of a memory tell me about other what something else. If you remember him saying, are each doing together. I remember used to play music for me, I would sit on my height chair and he wouldn't play the stand. A base for me is it sure of that, but I also have a very faint memory of it happening. Sue.
Your dad died. When you were three yes sixteen now. Yes, curious, what are some question? that you have about him. If there are some that have come up for you recently in a week, You ve, given us such a vivid picture of you as a kid. Curious, you is there as a team. I could have start thinking about him for a while, but I started again about a year ago we are too asked bob questions. Who he was asked questions about would like to do how tall ass he was. He I murmur. Was the attractive was he was he bought? I was one of my being questioned. I was Excited when he was was daddy, it was daddy. Funny, study, annoying While me and my mom are similar in a lot of ways I've always wanted to know if you like me, so I would just want to know small details. It was mostly because I wanted to know if any of the problems that I had in my life.
We're inherited from him and Whenever I gotta yes, yes, yes,. not like her. We feel things I was I'd, felt sad so melancholy, a lot during these conversations does it was like. lost others. This is something, but I will never have. Hearing about it is comforting in some way, because you know more facts, but maybe it also feels not so great because you don't get to experience them yourself. Also because he becomes more of a person, the more you talk about them less of a memory, and why is that uncomfortable feeling? Well, If you dont know someone very well there's not much, miss. the more you know a person the more about them. There is to miss, especially if you,
the person was a similar present eu. Especially when you don't have a father figure it from us your You said that you in your I talk a lot about your dad when you have questions. Was there ever a time where you were like I'm gonna try to figure some stuff out about him. On my own, I did, as I found the article gotcha. The modern love s. Your mom wrote I didn't know the article existed to like six raid So where were you when you you were? I was, in class, and I was on the computer. Those bore- and I was the link like I was little little rascal, Like I'm, ready physical, maniac us look at me, you decide to google your own name. Yes bobby. the cubs at first and I saw an article. Could I forgive him one last time I did read it all the way through I'd enough to us. Oh my god, it's about me. What do you feel like your mom's story,.
revealed to you about your dad that you had known before. If anything,. It was a story that I knew It revealed that she was paying attention whether I thought she was because I remember the swami incident with the fish, but I I know that my kindergarten I would come and talk to her about that, and I didn't know that it had been such a big deal for everyone so, What kind of like you in a play into the play Evan? Watching a video of you on stage, Where you can see yourself. This was like a little bit more detail than I had before. Have sod about what your life would be like. If your dad we're around now almost every day. I believe that if he were still alive, I might have been a more balanced purse. but he. Would have made my life hole. I find your thing missing now that I've.
Now. There is something missing, but I assumed because I've never father Its everyone else had this secret that I didn't have. Do you feel that way anymore? I still feel that way. I've lived with daddy's death more. But I've lived with day. And because of that, the In part of him to me is his death, because support that has had the biggest effect all my life. Judah, thank you so much for coming into the studio and talking with me, I so enjoyed our conversation I jared as well. Thank you so much for having me I'll. First, a woman as yet, but I've been totally by your nose and is totally in line. I can see her alive again, but I dunno what else she's got Don't you awaken lanes worth due to your father and allergies, to nato wildly fast? We migrate
hmm Hmm, hmm, This is the final episode of our summer season. We're gonna take just a few weeks off and then we'll be back with a whole new lineup of stories in the fall, modern love is produced by Julia voltaire and HANS Buteux, its edited by Sarah saracens this episode was mixed by Jan Powell, who also created our wonderful modern love thing: music, original music. In this episode by Marian Lozano did you production by making much a bloody and especial thanks to Anna diamond at bottom. The modern love column is edited by Daniel Jones. Mealy is the editor of modern love projects and anna martin thing?
for listening.
Transcript generated on 2022-08-10.