Saturday, July 16, 2016

July 16, 2016 A Letter That Might Have Been: The Beach, The Birthday and Hospice

Dear Mom,

The other day I was thinking about how much fun we all had when you decided in 2009 that you would go to Nags Head. I know it wasn’t the same without Dad, but didn’t we have a good time in spite of it.  You told me that someday I'll understand  how good it feels to have your kids with you , no matter what their ages might be. I understand that now.  This picture makes me laugh because you said to Bob B., "Don't you want a comb first?"  He explained gently that this is what hair looks like after a day in the beach wind. Bob K. then said, "I combed mine. Does it look ok?"  You had a good chuckle and never mentioned the comb again.

And by the way, those shells you gathered weighed a lot in my suitcase and I think we must have forgotten about them because the other day I found them, in the basement & still in the bag that you used to collect them!

I know you felt lonely sometimes without Dad, but we were awfully glad that you continued to go out and have some fun. I don’t know who took this shot of you at the Brew Pub, but I think you look amazing for 89 years old!

Your 90th birthday in 2010 was  such fun. Do you remember opening that card and finding  90  one dollar bills?  What else do you get for someone who has everything!  Once you stopped laughing and dried those tears, I loved your comment, "Now I have tip money!"

The months to follow  weren’t as carefree, were they?  After what the doctor told you about your heart, your desire to never return to a hospital was so apparent. And that you agreed to have hospice care so that you could stay in your own apartment was really brave. I don’t think I’ll ever forget overhearing you on the phone telling a friend, “I’ve signed up with Hospice because I probably won’t be living too much longer.” And a few days later another call, "My great-grand children will be here tomorrow and it's the last time I'll be able to see them. They are cute as bugs!" I didn't want to hear that conversation but I knew it was true. During those 8 months, didn’t we have the best conversations! You told me so many wonderful stories and shared so much wisdom. I cherish those times more than you can imagine. 

You were hilarious when you decided you  wanted to see if you could still play a harmonica in spite of using oxygen and you did pretty well considering you hadn't played one in 85 years or so!  That you continued to sew and knit, and paint the things you saw from your sunroom window seemed incredible. You sure enjoyed keeping busy. I love this picture of you on the day that the Hospice nurse first came. You were listening to every word and you two developed the most wonderful relationship.  You   so enjoyed her visits.

Sorry this is such a short letter, but I think  this  will be all for today.  Tomorrow the blog ends.

Hope you are fine.

Lots of love,



  1. That's such a moving post, Ann. What spirit and strength your Mom must have had - what a wonderful lady. The photo from when she was 89 is incredible, she looks ageless.

    1. Mike, thank you so much for writing! Endling the blog was a bit complicated and I wasn't sure how to best do it. This and the last post were challenging. So I truly appreciate your kind comment. I can gladly agree that Mom was a wonderful lady in every sense of the word. I hope that one day you write and share about your parents since your memories are so clear and special. Thanks again.


I welcome your comments!