The most important thing is being together

Eight years ago Leny’s husband passed away. She misses his company. Volunteer Jamie from Humanitas Tandem comes round every week to chat or play a game together.

Leny

“Eight years ago my husband passed away. I still miss him every day. There are other widows and widowers in my neighbourhood, but they have children, and I don’t. It’s different. I’m also not the type to go out and meet people. In the summer I ride around on my scooter sometimes like I used to do with my husband, but going shopping in the city? No thanks.

I often stay at home. I can entertain myself, that’s not a problem. I like to puzzle, and at 12 o clock I turn on the television. But I am a nervous type and I miss the company. That is why Jamie visits me. She is here every Wednesday. I look forward to it all week.

That’s a good girl for me I thought, after she was here for the first time. If there hadn’t have been a click, I would have sent her away. Then it doesn’t work. She was a bit quiet at the start. We had to get used to each other, but soon it felt more familiar.

Jamie helps me organise my paperwork also. But that is not the main focus. The most important thing is being together. Just sitting and chatting, with a cup of tea and a biscuit. Usually about this and that. Although recently I cried in front of her for the first time. It felt good to get it out!”

Jamie

“The bond between me and Leny gets tighter every time. She says she doesn’t share easily, but meanwhile we talk about more and more subjects together. In the beginning it was a bit uncomfortable and I had to find my way. Now we start to talk and laugh before I have even crossed the threshold.

We also have plans to go out together. I want to go outside with her, to break the mould, and because it is healthy. This worked together once before when we went to the city hall.

We have also planned to play games together. She thought I didn’t like playing games, but when she heard I did, we planned to start next week. We will see who is the most competitive.

The age difference is 52 years, but we don’t really notice it. Well, last week we were talking about music. We don’t know each other’s favourite songs. But that’s the only thing. I really like her. She is funny and direct, as am I. We have a good laugh together. If I have to skip a week I really miss the fun we have!”

Read other stories >