Thursday, July 14, 2016

July 14, 2016 A Letter That Might Have Been: The Stroke and Move of 2001

Dear Mom and Dad,

I’ve been reading your journal, Mom, and I guess sharing some of that might be the best way to let readers know about your stroke in 2001.  I am so grateful that you got home safely from As You Like It that night.  You were packing for Hawaii and so looking forward to that trip.

That was a scary time for all of us, but you inspired everyone by your diligence and hard work for recovery. I kept the notebooks where you wrote drafts of letters to your friends in order to write and spell each word correctly.

Even though you didn’t want to have to move, as always you were thinking of us. I will never forget the conversation you had with the Director of Pacific Place who was using your beautiful apartment to show  potential buyers. Do you remember that when she was leaving, she thanked you and said, “I can see that you have really made this your home.” And Mom, you replied, “We really didn’t have a choice so we just do our best and enjoy every day as much as we can! You see, a stroke changes everything.”

And while that may be true, you both certainly took advantage of all the opportunities there were in St. Louis! I’m so glad that you continued to travel and were still able to go to Hawaii and Nags Head.  And you were sure excited that we could all go to San Francisco for Bobby’s wedding. 

You said it was hard to believe that your first grandchild was all grown up and getting married! That was so much fun and we were all thrilled for Bobby  to have brought such a  wonderful person into our family.  I should add that both of you were beyond excited to have  2 energetic  and precious  great-grandchildren in a couple of years.

You thought it was silly, but here's the picture that was in the paper of you two  grilling out, which  I don't recall you ever doing:-)  And Dad,  when you said that you finally got to be the family chef,  did you notice Mom rolling her eyes? I don't think she would ever have relinquished her kitchen!

Mom, you  certainly never lost  your interest in world affairs and politics as I recently discovered when I read this journal entry.  I really wish I'd seen that letter you wrote to Bush.  Maybe there's a copy in a box somewhere.  If you only knew what was going on in this election year, I’m certain you’d be writing many letters.

As you can tell, I’m still trying to figure out how to end the blog, but I’m pretty sure I will finish in a few days.   I’ll write again soon.

Hope you are fine.

Lots of love,


P.S. You claimed you didn’t want to collect recipes anymore, but I found the very last one you ever copied.  It was stuck inside one of your books. Were you planning on having a big party?


  1. I'll bet your mom was just flat angry that she'd had a stroke. But it sounds like she did a great job of dealing with the frustrations and the rehab and therapy sessions that must have followed. Her handwriting stayed great and there's no sign that I can see of thought deterioration.
    I like your letters to your parents. It's a nice epilogue.

    1. She was irritated at having had a stroke, but more so at not being able to express herself as she thought she should. By casual observation however, you would have had no idea that she'd even had a stroke. I'm glad you're reading the "epilogue". Thanks very much!

  2. Ann, I guess this must have been a difficult post? Very poignant.

    1. Hi David! Figuring out what to say challenging, but I feel like it expresses the situation pretty well. Thanks so much for writing.

    2. David, I'm so delighted that you've enjoyed the letters and found them of interest. I loved reading your posts about your own childhood:-)


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