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Bold and the Beautiful's Susan Flannery, Don't Exit on My Birthday!

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The Bold and the Beautiful's Susan Flannery, please don't say good-bye on my birthday! Today marks Susan Flannery's last appearance as matriarch Stephanie Douglas Forrester on CBS' The Bold and the Beautiful after 25 years of being loved and hated the world over. Truth be told, her character was -- shall we say -- a handful. But she was our handful.

Susan Flannery leaving the show on my birthday makes it even harder for this loyal soap fan. And it's not just any birthday for me. It's a milestone birthday. I'm leaping forward to the next decade. So I need her there to hold my hand with her tough love now more than ever. Vicariously of course, through her battling daughters-in-law Brooke Forrester (Katherine Kelly Lang) and Taylor Forrester (Hunter Tylo).

First, Oprah was gone in the afternoons. Then All My Children's Susan Lucci. Now Susan Flannery. And her soap son, Ridge Forrester, played by Ronn Moss, just left, too. I'm starting to feel abandoned. I remember dragging around seven security blankets as a toddler. My mom said I wouldn't let her wash any of them. She couldn't even sneak one away to wash it, because I kept count of them. Each was a different color.

I don't know why I dragged around seven blankets. Perhaps because there were seven of us in our family including my parents. That's a lot to drag around for a pint-size girl. They got pretty raggedy after a while. But I couldn't let go.

Letting go. November 26, besides being the date of the last B&B appearance of Susan Flannery (unless she comes back as a twin or some other way), is also the anniversary of the day President George Washington recognized as a Public Day of Thanksgiving to express thankfulness for the creation of the United States of America. That historic proclamation for November 26, 1789 was made during our first president's first year in office.

So Susan Flannery, in thanksgiving for all the laughter, tears and an occasional shoe thrown at the TV set in frustration (but out of love) and on behalf of all the fans of The Bold and the Beautiful, including both my dearly departed mother Lillian and grandmother Marie Newman who hooked me on the Bell family soaps starting with the characters of Victor and Nikki Newman on The Young and the Restless (I think my grandmother Newman thought we were related somehow on her side of the family) it is a privilege to watch this great art form (and it is an art form) with such magnificent collaboration among the actors, writers, directors, producers and the production team of unsung heroes and heroines behind the scenes. We fans offer you our thanks, our gratitude and our love.

Let's raise one last Martini glass (her preferred drink with TV hubby John McCook as Eric Forrester) to Susan Flannery that Stephens College Theatre Arts grad, for a quarter century of being a handful on B&B, may those Irish eyes of hers, always shine.