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100 – ELISE – my mother dearest – would I have been thrown from her womb she would have been content

October 2, 2016

100 – ELISE – my mother dearest – would I have been thrown from her womb she would have been content  October 2, 1916 

“Today would have been my mother’s 100th birthday. She was born at home at 704 East Chelten Ave. in Germantown, Pa. I think not only of her today but of her mother, Gertrude. It was not uncommon at the time for women to die in childbirth. My grandmother must have been scared. In four months, it will be five years since my mother died at the age of 95. She kept a journal in which she wrote every day except for the last weeks of her life when she was too ill. She wanted me to edit it and get it published. I didn’t think it was publishable. It was full of minutiae — what she ate, the books she read, the weather, phone calls from me and my brother, politics. I know she was angry with me for not getting her journals published. I still have many of those journals. What I want to do, if I have time in what remains of my own life, is to try to make sense and come to terms with hers, in part so that I can try to make sense and come to terms with my own. (Photo: Elise in her last home, with her great-grandson Hunter and her grandson, Dylan. July 4, 2011)”

 

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I never saw this apartment or the building where she finally died.  I was never welcomed there as though I was a leper.  Everything that had belonged to her was kept from me and my family.  My family was extremely bigoted.  The references that are made in the above paragraph of my sister reflect the narcissistic personality that my family engulfed.  There was never a family after my father died about thirty years ago in 1989.  
I do not know any of the people shown in this picture at that juncture of their lives because I was forbidden to come and stay there.  By the same token those who I loved and who I miss also shunned me  I am an orphan.  No one sees me as a person of worth in my family since the acrimonious end of my marriage and the loss of every one of my friends.
My mother’s birth is bittersweet because essentially she never wanted me.
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