She’s Not Going to Live to 105

I got a letter (yes, a real, handwritten on stationery letter!) from my sister-in-law (my sort-of sister-in-law… she was married to my husband’s brother and we kept her even after they divorced). She has a real talent for writing letters.

A big part of this letter was about her 94 year-old mother who now lives with her. They are one of those mother-daughter pairs who haven’t seen eye-to-eye since the daughter hit her teens, long ago. It hasn’t been easy since her mother moved in, cranky and critical, but really needing care. L loves her mom, though, and has persevered in her role as caretaker. Most of their interactions, she says, now revolve around food, water, pills… and dry pants. In this letter, she said she has come to realize her mom really isn’t going to make it to a hundred and five. Her mother isn’t a happy person, never has been. But L says she has sensed some peace in her mom lately. And so she says, she is trying to live each day with her as if it might be her mother’s last day on earth.

She wouldn’t want to be mean to her on her last day.

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5 Responses to She’s Not Going to Live to 105

  1. onathought says:

    There’s some motivation to take a deep breath and be nice!

  2. Alice Nine says:

    L will be much healthier if she is able to respond to her mother’s crankiness, criticalness, and care needs in peace. Not easy, but the alternative can be devastatingly harder. It’s wonderful that she has you to share with. BTW, aren’t those longhand letters by snail mail wonderful? I received one not long ago from a dear friend.

  3. Mukhamani says:

    Yes, it is good if we learn to live each day as it comes. I write letters to my aunt, may father’s elder brother’s wife every week. We both enjoy them. She is 88 and cannot hear properly on the phone.

  4. arjeha says:

    I know of so many mother/daughter conflicts that I wonder if this is just something that happens. Doesn’t mean that there is a lack of love just differing views on everything.

  5. Ramona says:

    Oh, there’s nothing better than a handwritten letter and one in which someone can be refreshingly honest? A gift indeed. Glad you were there with a listening ear and a loving eye.

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