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April 18, 2014

I wish you knew what a special day today is. I have to wonder if you knew the small bowl of pureed cake was for your 85th birthday. Did you know the difference between the cake and the mashed potatoes? The nurses were telling me again how happy they are to see you eat so well. They say you have such a good appetite and so easy to feed. They all tell me how sweet and pleasant you are and they are glad to be a part of your care plan.

I think back to the big party we had six years ago with family and friends celebrating with lots of food and cake. I knew then it would be the most memorable birthday party you would ever have. I also knew your memory of that day would be short lived. But knowing it then, does not make today any easier for me to understand and cope with.

I enjoyed reading the birthday greetings that were sent to you from family and friends who took the time to brighten your room with pretty cards filled with loving thoughts and prayers. Even though they know you don’t remember them, they have not forgotten you. Especially your high school friend Marge in Chicago, she sends a card and note for every occasion. You made a life- long friend in her and she has not let your illness diminish that friendship. She often calls to check on you and me both.

The newspaper called today and they want to write a story about us. They want more people to know what this disease does to people and how it changes lives. You may not know that you are a gift to so many other people, but you are. You are teaching and sharing lessons that no one ever wants to face. There are people who will benefit from our struggles and fears. They will know much more than we did about what to expect and how to get through the hard times.

It may be your birthday today, but you are the one still giving the gift of life and hope to those around you. Pretty typical of the life you have lived, always putting others needs ahead of your own.


Happy 85th Birthday Mom. I Love You!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



  1. Kay Manring permalink

    Carolyn, your statement ” It may be your birthday today, but you are the one still giving the gift of life and hope to those around you. Pretty typical of the life you have lived, always putting others needs ahead of your own.” That describes your mom so well. She loves each one of her children so much.
    I remember Easter was a special time for her. She always planned ahead and made sure you had candy and a special outfit for Easter. How she managed it on the little money she had, I don’t know but she did it, but she was able to put back and save for special occasions. Your dad’s family didn’t really celebrate the holidays. But she made them special for you. Just as you make her day special. Who knows??? She may know more than you think. Bless you Carolyn.

    • I like to believe that she knows more than we think and give her credit for. I remember the special Easter traditions of the new dress,hat, purse, gloves and shoes. The true sign of new beginnings. I miss those hats!! Of course it would not have been Easter without those colored baby chicks from Bess’s IGA store. Even when I couldn’t have one, I loved seeing them in the store and when I think of those boxes of baby chicks, I can still smell them. (My Uncle Bonnie, did get me some once!)

  2. Darling, I know your mother, deep inside, is grateful beyond measure for you. And you help me find my way, too. Today I made the step to engage a companion/personal helper for my mother, who has become almost totally blind. Thinking of you and your mother gives me courage. Love you.

  3. Dear CurtissAnn, you are a true friend indeed! We hold each other up in ways that some cannot understand. I find myself so many times saying that ALL of this is God’s plan, not mine. When I take the time to reflect on HIS plan, I can see some, but certainly not ALL of the silver lining’s he has included in this storm. As we have talked before, our finding each other again was part of His plan, and for our special friendship I am quite grateful. May your mother’s new companion be a God-send for you and bring you some respite. Wishing you and your family a very happy and Blessed Easter. Love you dear friend.

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