I have a letter written by Grandma to Mom in the isolation hospital dated September 1, 1952 that is 5 pages long. I’ll share parts of it as we move ahead, but at the end of her letter, Grandma included a timeline of the days before Mom was admitted into the isolation hospital and told her that she could stick it her diary if she’d like.
Throughout this project I want to be as culturally sensitive as possible while remaining historically accurate. I am including the more outdated term “Indian” although we now generally use the term First Nations. The stories I was always told were that Grandma and Grandpa built and maintained good relationships with our Morley neighbours to the west and I want to honour that. But our terminology has changed and I think my grandparents would also want to be respectful and culturally sensitive.
July – Friday 25th – a young neighbour took sick
Saturday 26th – show in Cochrane
Sunday 27th – we went to church
Monday 28th – we went to Cochrane, you stayed in
Tuesday 29th —-
Wednesday 30th – took Indians to town (Cochrane) and brought you home – tired. You went to bed for your supper
July 31st – Went to show in Calgary with Dad
August 2nd – Saturday – went to show in Cochrane
3rd picnic at Morley. 4th —— 5th ——-
August 6 – Wednesday night – took Vera over to Margs – you were feeling sick – Sheila made you lie on chesterfield and covered you with the green rug.
August 7th – you ate a good breakfast – the last I cooked for you – toast eggs etc. But you stayed in bed all day and felt pretty miserable. was very sick at night.
August 8. Went in to Dr. and was very sick – went to Isolation Hospital
The timeline has never been very clear for me, I found this quite interesting to see how the last couple of weeks went for mom before she was admitted to hospital. How scary it must have been, and how the virus seemed to be a roll of the dice as to who was going to be sick and who would remain healthy.
I have to admit that reading this made me tear up a little. Honestly, most of the letters are painfully beautiful to read. But here, as Grandma was laying out the last bit of time that they had with mom when things were “normal”, it just made me so sad for Grandma. Much as mom never complained about things, I never once heard grandma say a bad word about anything that happened during this time. But as a mom it must have been absolutely heart wrenching.
Tomorrow I’ll share some of this letter from Grandma to mom.