Kentucky Stories of Loss

3 Robins, 1980

Who did you lose to Covid 19? Robin Smith

There were so many girls named Robin in our high school class. And in my group of friends there was me, and two girls named Robin Smith. We called them Robin #1 and Robin #2. I was just “Robs.” Sometimes, #1 and #2 bullied me, or so it seemed at the time, and they were bonded by this weirdness of having the same name. Remember crank phone calls? We started getting them at my house. Endlessly. The yellow push button phone in our kitchen, next to the fridge, would ring and my mother would pick it up and there was just silence there. Soon, we stopped answering the phone because every call was a crank. It was making my mother go nuts (or nuttier) and she would drink more. Finally, my father called the phone company and got a tracer put on the line. When we found out that the calls were coming from Robin #2’s house, my mother went to talk to her mother. I was scared about how I would be treated when I returned to school the next day. Robin #1 Smith called me though and said she had heard about it and how she thought it was dumb and that she was on my side. We were better friends after that. We shared so much and I regret now, as a 55-year-old woman that we didn’t stay closer as we aged. But I will think about her, and miss her. I promise that.

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