Judy and I Immediately recognized our kindredness…born of the same generation, lovers of the same music, our minds and hearts touched by the same magic!

Judy moved down from Pennsylvania after her husband died. Prior to her tragic loss, she had been under hospice care with kidney failure. She recovered and made a life change and a move south. When we met, she’d been living in her station wagon with everything she owned. She had been carjacked, robbed and left with no resources and little money, finding her way to the Talbot House. The following day, surrounded by our “Tribe” of women who watch out for the newbies, Judy was escorted in through the studio door.

Judy is a writer of stories…other’s stories that have mingled into her own. She’s generous with her time, with her heart and ferociously jealous of her private space, a gift to herself she requires until the loneliness rears up and she makes her way back to the company of ladies who lovingly call her “Mama Judy.”

Judy was briefly engaged in one of our sewing internships and quickly realized the sewing machine was not going to be her friend! She comfortably switched seats and exchanged the sewing machine for beads, scissors and paint brushes, creating lovely ornaments on sand dollars among other pieces that occupy the mind and keep restless hands busy.

She wears her beautiful, long, grey hair across her shoulders, it frames her mischievous, elvish grin and sparkling eyes. Judy, as with all of us, hungers to be known, she has engaged in several relationships online hoping for love and adventure, reminiscent of younger times and committed love. Contentment seems elusive during these last couple years. Judy has suffered with one illness after another, as do most women surviving their days without direction or purpose. Waking and sleeping, smoking and eating making up their days wandering from one bench to another and learning our limitations with swings! 😉

Judy had been fortunate to get assigned a case worker who moved her into a rooming house with a roommate. I’m learning no matter how close these ladies friendships are they do not survive living with one another in crowded efficiency apartments. Judy moved back to her trusted wagon and parked at Walmart for months. She is now in a small efficiency apartment in a compound along with several male renters. She is safe. She receives a monthly check, but seldom leaves the confines of her home to pick up groceries, depending on a kind gesture from one of the men who have a vehicle. We keep in touch, making a point to do a lunch when the time allows.

Judy has a twin brother who has been promising to come down for a couple years now, his family is still in PA and his health mirrors her own. Her heart is bound to him and she aches outwardly as the time moves forward without a visit.

Judy is an old hippie with vivid memories that are kept alive by her international Facebook friends and YouTube videos of Jackson Browne, Harry Chapin and Joni Mitchell… Yes, we are kindred spirits!!