Mamacita says: I know there are tons of honest, worthy charities out there, and I understand that one of the ways some of them make their money, and quite legitimately, is via the mail. However, HOLY COW, charities. Mom’s mail is being forwarded to us right now, and will be for a few more months, and every. Single. Day. she gets a huge pile of solicitations, complete with heartbreaking pictures and “personal” letters, and pleas for more and more money. When we went through her checkbook, we discovered that she’d been sending hundreds and hundreds of dollars monthly to a dozen or more charities. Mom had a sweet, loving, sharing heart, and these artfully-worded pleas did exactly what the marketers wanted; she got out her checkbook and sent money she could have used for herself to all kinds of charities.
Most of these were legit, I admit, but I hate the wording and I hate the pictures and I hate the way each fat, padded envelope full of free birthday cards, etc, seemed to target the vulnerable elderly. Every day we get a ginormous pile of this kind of mail (plus PCH) and now I understand why Mom always had a pile of junky pens, address labels, cheap cards, nickels, dimes, and even socks, by her chair. She thought, as do a lot of elderly people, that if these agencies were kind enough to send her gifts, she should send them a gift, too. And now I have a pile of junky pens, nickels, dimes, and weird socks by my chair. I cry a little every time I throw away the address labels; Mom certainly doesn’t need those any more. She has a much better address now.
As for the stamped envelopes. . . . . I cut off the stamps and use them to help mail masks to people, so thanks, charities.
I used to wonder why Mom needed so many stamps; she had me ordering them for her monthly and sometimes twice monthly. Now I get it. The Post Office will forward her mail to me only a few months longer. When I stop getting letters addressed to her, it will hurt. But everything hurts, so it will be just one more.
I miss my mom. I did not realize just how thoroughly my life was tied up with hers until suddenly it wasn’t. Facebook memories remind me daily. The new, very nice people in her house remind me daily. I wheeled the trash bin to the curb tonight and didn’t have to run over to do hers tonight; another reminder. We had fried chicken last night and had a breast and wing left over because I didn’t have to fix her a plate. Everything reminds, and everything hurts. Does anybody need a pile of cheap birthday cards?
Oftentimes, we don’t realize how much someone else’s existence is interwoven into our own until they’re not longer present in our daily tasks. The hurt will never go away, but the memories – those are the things to remember when it does hurt. What kind of cheap birthday cards?