For weeks I’ve gone about a Friday routine of writing a letter to my mother (even though you’ve seen none of the pages). On every envelope is scrawled the notation ‘Please open and read to Barbara.’ Now, I find that few, if any, of the more recent letters have been opened.
That is because her condition has worsened; she is weak and cannot eat on her own. She’s been moved to another facility better able to care for her more immediate health situation. My brother and I are hopeful she can regain her strength and return to the location she has come to view as her home.
It looks as if years of writing to my parents has reached a natural end. It is disheartening for me to know that as far as letters to my parents are concerned, there really will be no more. It was my lifeline to them in a way they could grasp. It brought me some comfort that at least I was doing my best to stay in touch. Many posts ago, I alluded to the fact the ink-on-paper was how many people in their age group got their news whether it was world, state and local events as well as social doings. Electronic methods and gadgetry so in vogue were of little use to mom and dad. They were information aliens in cyberspace, especially my mother.
So now I have no way to communicate with mom. She has no phone in her room, and if she did her eyesight is such she could not locate it. She cannot read. The best my brother and I can do is hold his cell phone up to her ear while I talk and she listens. But it’s hard for her to comprehend and process what she’s hearing. It’s not feasible, either, to travel to see mom as often as a good son should do. The 1,238 miles between us has a way of interrupting the personal touch she needs. Tomorrow, Friday, there will be no letter.