Nov 23rd / 10
My darling Charley
I am writing you this letter to tell you the sad news of our darling Mother, who is just now passing slowly away. She had a very bad turn last Sunday morning at 9 0clock & we sent for the family, in the afternoon, she sent for them all one by one, & said Good bye to them all, & also to Father. Oh, dear, it was the most awful heartbreaking scene, for she put her darling arms round him, as if she could never let go again, & she is so weak & thin. Yet after all that here is Thursday, & she is still with us, almost speechless from weakness, but quite collected, & with the same wonderful thought for others. Yesterday morning at about 5, oclock, she asked me the day of the week, so I said it was Wednesday, so she said - When next you write to Charley - Give him my dearest love, & say Good bye & tell him, I think & prayer for him all the time. Now dear old boy, I have given your her message word for word & that is almost the last sentence she has said, for now it is only a word or two at a time she can speak. She lingers on day after day, on no food what so ever - a little ice, sometimes, but yesterday not even that. It is a week since she took, one particle of nourishment, & yet she is still alive - Sometimes we go & stand over her & almost think she has passed away, she is so quiet, it is most wonderful & Dr Neish & the nurses, have never heard of such a case - We always have a nurse sitting inn the room & one of us besides, I was up, for the most part of three nights, but tonight, I slept till two oclock & Joan was here in charge. Mother is asleep now propped up in bed with pillows, three windows open to & bottom, & the door open, she must have plenty of air. We sit wrapped up in dressing gowns shawls rugs etc & try & get warm beside a huge fire - Dr Neish is in 5 & 6 times a day, & often we call him in the night. She is given a drug for the pain & to make her sleep - The family are all awfully good, Arthur is sleeping here so as to be with Father at night poor old man does not like to be left. Edith comes in every day all day & Ethel G. is in out all the time & perfectly sweet. Christine is here most of the time too, & sits with Mother a lot. Joan is turning out a splendid little nurse, & Mother loves to have her.
When all is over, I am going to take Father away, most likely to Sidmouth, as we both require a change. Joan will go away somewhere too. Oh dear, whatever shall we do, without our darling, it is too awful to think of, for she is the very best of Mothers & a stay & prop to all the family - Father is most wonderfully (subsequent pages missing)