A grandmother is a mother who has a second chance

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Let's hear it for longevity!

I love having really old relatives! That means I might make it to a nice old age.

Earlier this year Ed and I met an aunt of mine in France who had just turned 100! She was getting a little forgetful (that is a lot of years to remember, after all), but still lived alone with some help and was doing great!

This past week Ed, his older sister (who just turned 82!) and I met Ed's last remaining aunt who just turned 97! Her name is Stella, she lives alone in a condo she bought in 1975, and she's quite amazing. Has a young woman who comes in twice a day to help her with meds and meals, but other than that she gets by all by herself. Still reads voraciously - in fact she had just gone to the library and picked up about 8 new books! Recently she and the caretaker took a trip to Sausalito to visit one of her "girlfriends" who had her 93rd birthday.

As we were driving there we were wondering if she would remember Ed, if she would be very coherent, etc. We walked into her condo and there she was, sitting in the chair with this yellow 2-piece outfit on and a big smile on her face. I would not have guessed she was more than 80 at the most! We spent 2 hours with her going through old family photos and talking about "back in the day." In fact, she pulled out her boxes of photos so we could take whatever we wanted. She has no children and doesn't want things to just be thrown away when she dies. So we found some great photos of Ed's father as a young man and many other treasurers. I'll be on another scanning frenzy soon.

She told us some fun stories about Ed's grandmother and great-grandmother. Some interesting stuff about her own life. And she told us about her husband, Elmer, who passed away four years ago. She's lonely - no kids and most of her friends are gone now. And how she's ready to join him.

All in all, a very touching and wonderful visit. And inspiring. We're so glad we connected with her and plan to visit her again.


Mellodee said...

She looks terrific!! A lot better than most the ladies her age! I sure wish I had longevity in my family, but no. Mid-80s seems to be the upper limit. That is getting entirely too close for comfort!

judypatooote said...

I dearly love those old stories. If only...you know there is always an if only....I would give anything, if only I would have written down some of my mom and dads stories....

Stella certainly doesn't look her age...but then there are old old people, and young old people, you know what I mean...I have been trying to write down what I remember about grandma and gramps and mom and dad...even the grandkids tell some whopper stories that are worth writing down....

My daughter and her husband are going to Paris next week...she is so excited....he is a professional photographer, so I am excited to see their pictures...

Well it's been a while since I've been by to visit you Sandy...I'm on facebook now too, and it seems like a faster way to communicate... they only let you write so many words....and as you can tell by this comment, I am quite chatty....LOL....well stop by, I'm going to do somemore updating on my blog, because that is where all my blogging friends are...it would be ashame not to keep up our visits... judy

judypatooote said...

Hi again... on facebook as
Judy Karle Schuster which is who I am....LOL it would be nice to make you a friend on facebook.