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 How Often Do You Call Your Parents?

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alice
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alice

Number of posts : 15669
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Age : 71
Location : Redmond, WA

How Often Do You Call Your Parents? Empty
PostSubject: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptyFri Jan 06, 2012 8:49 pm

My 91year -old mother- in-law called us eight times on Wednesday to see if we were home. We were out of town at a friend's birthday celebration and felt we are in our sixties, we shouldn't have to be checked on.

What is reasonable here?
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Shelagh
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Shelagh

Number of posts : 12583
Registration date : 2008-01-11
Location : UK

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySat Jan 07, 2012 2:23 am

It's loneliness, Alice. Before she died at the age of ninety-two, my mother-in-law rang my brother-in-law several times a day, every day. She would pretend that she didn't remember calling earlier, but her mind remained sharp and alert. We fill our hours with things to do so the time goes quickly. For old, immobile people, an hour can seem like a day.

_________________
How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 41ZdcL0lV7L._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 41C9GeFDNWL._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 41%2BmGkZJdOL._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 51eDGllZXhL._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 41y7VHKoszL._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 51Zs4N4T4eL._SL125_
Amazon Author Central: Shelagh Watkins
I shall never be old. It doesn't suit me -- ŠShelagh Watkins 2017
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Al Stevens
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Al Stevens

Number of posts : 1727
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Location : Florida

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySat Jan 07, 2012 5:01 am

Our parents took loving care of us in the young years of our lives when we needed special care. Now that they need special care, we owe them at least the same number of years.
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Abe F. March
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Abe F. March

Number of posts : 10680
Registration date : 2008-01-26
Age : 80
Location : Germany

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySat Jan 07, 2012 5:53 am

I agree with you, Al.
Even a phone call says I care or I'm thinking of you. Just because someone is old doesn't mean they lose their feelings.
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alj
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alj

Number of posts : 9633
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Age : 75
Location : San Antonio

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySat Jan 07, 2012 6:49 am

My dad died in 1982 and my mom in 1995, so contacting them today would involve a level of consciousness that I have not yet attained. How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 976521

As far as giving them time goes, my mother lived with me the last five years of her life. One thing I learned was that, just as they (if they were doing their jobs) set limits on our behavior while we were children, when the situation was reversed, and we were caring for them, we, too, had to set and enforce limits on them.

Mom, when she first moved in, would call me at work, several times a day. Fortunately, the school secretary was willing to work with me, and we got it under control. One summer, while I was taking a few very much needed days off, she called my hotel room several times a day. I had to insist that she limit them to one each morning.

Mom would have preferred to live with my brother, but he wasn't having any of that. He just lectured me for not doing the job as well as he would have done (had he been willing).

Alice, you and Dave are the only ones who are really aware of your situation. You both obviously care for her, or you wouldn't be asking the question. If the two of you decide that limits need to be set, then support each other and do what is best for everyone concerned, and don't allow yourselves to be guilted into doing otherwise.

Ann
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dkchristi
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dkchristi

Number of posts : 8594
Registration date : 2008-12-29
Location : Florida

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySat Jan 07, 2012 7:02 am

Those of us closer to older than younger can feel the future - and know why those in their 90's are lonely. Their friends and loved ones in the same age group died. Their children and grandchildren have busy lives of their own. I remember being irritated at my retired spouse who wanted to call me at work several times a day - (not uncommon when one spouse retires before the other).

My mother is 92. I called her just about every evening, the loneliest time. She calls my brother sometimes during the day. Right now she is visiting me in my home so that saves a few cell phone minutes - and she is not lonely. She does not call my brother. In fact, I reminded her to call him but she said "he knows I'm fine." He called her!

Every family is different. It also makes a difference whether it is your parent or the parent of your spouse - amazing the difference in point of view!

Bottom line: 90's is lonely for many. No one wants them to work. No one wants them to babysit. No one wants them for cards. No one wants to hear about the ailments, the only thing of interest in their lives. No one wants their memories. It is the fortunate elderly person who lives in a community where they find activities and friends.

I believe we are lucky. I always have a friend in my computer who tells me to write, to edit, to continue....my difficulty is leaving it to be with people who are much more challenging.

There is no one answer as there are individuals.

My son lived here for a while. We used to holler "night" across the house whoever was retiring first. When he left, I sent him a txt, "nt" that he returned "nt". As time went by it remained a habit. I got busy and skipped a few "nts". He called me. He said he used the "nt" to know I was okay. When he didn't get one, he called to check. Last thing of each day, I txt "nt" even if I'm on a ship. It's a nice feeling to know someone is watching. He doesn't always sent a "nt" back - but I don't want him to worry about me again. I send mine faithfully.
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Al Stevens
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Al Stevens

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySat Jan 07, 2012 11:56 am

I wish I had the problem. I didn't get to know my parents as elderly folk. They didn't make it. My in-laws filled in, and we took care of them in the last few years of their lives. My mother-in-law was a handful. Pop made it as easy as he could. I intend to be more like him if I can manage it.
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alice
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alice

Number of posts : 15669
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Age : 71
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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySat Jan 07, 2012 2:31 pm

I am glad we have her. I just would like her to quit worrying about us. We call her and visit her often and she us.
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alj
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alj

Number of posts : 9633
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Age : 75
Location : San Antonio

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySat Jan 07, 2012 2:45 pm

I hear you, Alice. It is frustrating because we care and are involved.

Ann
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joefrank
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joefrank

Number of posts : 8210
Registration date : 2008-11-04
Age : 70
Location : Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySat Jan 07, 2012 4:47 pm

1/6/2012


I'm sorry to say my Mom passed away 22 years ago at 64.
It's true what Ann said, the roles do reverse, when I was in
my 30's I would visit and she would tell me " Call me when you
get home !' I would say: " Mom, I'm 36, I can take care of my
self." But I know it was out of love. I also know that anything
can happen when your driving by yourself. How I miss those
words. I have a friend in his 70's who I have been helping, I
don't know if anyone knows what it's like to deal with Alzheimers
disease, it's horrible and theirs no cure !


Cheers..Joe... Very Happy
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alice
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alice

Number of posts : 15669
Registration date : 2008-10-22
Age : 71
Location : Redmond, WA

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySat Jan 07, 2012 5:06 pm

Joe,

You are a saint.

Dave's Mom knew we were going to a party. it was 60 miles away it began at 2:00 pm. We arrived home at 8:45 pm.

We had talked to her on the phone in the morning. She drives and can go somewhere/anywhere. She is not housebound.

Is it prudent for her to begin fussiing at 3:49 and calling and recalling to the tune of eight times in that time span?

She could have left a message--we will take our cell phone next time, we can call her.

I told Dave his mother would fuss--he said, "I am too old for this."

My mother did not do this. She cared but she had her own life, too.
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Abe F. March
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Abe F. March

Number of posts : 10680
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Age : 80
Location : Germany

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 12:57 am

Both of my parents are deceased. I would love to hear their voices again.
Now the roles are reversed and we are becoming the elderly. I love it when I get a phone call from my daughters and hear them say, "I love you."
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alj
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alj

Number of posts : 9633
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Age : 75
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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 4:34 am

My parents are both gone, too, and have been for some time. My dad died when he was the age I am now, of leukemia. His mind was still quite sharp. He worked up until a day or so before he entered the hospital for the last time.

My mom handled her life fairly well after he was gone, until she reached her seventies. After tht, her mind didn't work properly. She forgot things. She stipped eating, she started instances of what my school psychologist called "recursive behavior," which meant she would do the same thing, over and over again, until we stopped her.

She was not capable of taking care of herself. I was the one who took on the responsibility of caring for her. It was often an emotionally painful job. I loved her or I would not have taken it on, and lived with it for five years.

Not complaining, I'm simply stating that there are times when the frustrations get compounded with guilt, and when one is going through the struggle, a little validation goes a long way.

It doesn't help to chide someone who is dealing with such struggles. They need all the support they can get.

Just me.

Ann
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Shelagh
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Shelagh

Number of posts : 12583
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Location : UK

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 5:35 am

Everyone here is trying to be supportive, Ann. Growing old is not something to look forward to. The more we try to understand old people now, while we are young enough to think logically, the better understood we might be when we are old. I agree with Al, I wouldn't want to be a burden to anyone.

_________________
How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 41ZdcL0lV7L._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 41C9GeFDNWL._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 41%2BmGkZJdOL._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 51eDGllZXhL._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 41y7VHKoszL._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 51Zs4N4T4eL._SL125_
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I shall never be old. It doesn't suit me -- ŠShelagh Watkins 2017
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alj
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alj

Number of posts : 9633
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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 6:01 am

Neither would I, Shelagh. Nobody does.

I heard Alice expressing frustration over having to cope with the problem. The fact that she is coping shows she cares. It seemed to me that she needed validation for the reality of her situation. She knows her obligations. She is doing her best to meet them. She knows her mother-in-law has feelings. She has them, too.

A big part of loving is being willing to do the work of love. That is not always easy, especially when it involves the role reversal of having to parent your own parent. Sometimes you have to be the bad guy, and it is very easy to feel guilty. Sometimes, in that spot, we just need to hear that we are OK.

All I'm saying.

Ann
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alice
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alice

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Age : 71
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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 8:49 am

Thank you, All, for your help.
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Shelagh
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Shelagh

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 9:34 am

alj wrote:
Sometimes, in that spot, we just need to hear that we are OK.

Ann
There would be no discussion if everyone just said, yep, that's okay, carry on. When a poster asks if it is reasonable for a ninety-one-year-old to phone several times over a few hours, the simple answer is that it's unreasonable. However, it happens a lot to families on both sides of the pond.

My mother-in-law used to sit with the phone in her lap. She would phone the chemist (drugstore), doctor's surgery, her son and anyone else she could think of to ask the simplest question. We wonder about things all the time, but we do not constantly voice our thoughts and ask questions because we soon come up with our own answers -- and are glad we didn't bother anybody asking a stupid question!

Old people have much more time to sit and think, and they need constant reassurance. I'm sure you did a terrific job, and I can guess that your mother only complained when you didn't meet her expectations and seldom praised when you did. It makes you wonder about her own upbringing.

I'm not looking forward to being old.

_________________
How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 41ZdcL0lV7L._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 41C9GeFDNWL._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 41%2BmGkZJdOL._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 51eDGllZXhL._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 41y7VHKoszL._SL125_ How Often Do You Call Your Parents? 51Zs4N4T4eL._SL125_
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I shall never be old. It doesn't suit me -- ŠShelagh Watkins 2017
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alice
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alice

Number of posts : 15669
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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 9:56 am

We don't want to be old--don't want to die either.

Hard situation.
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alice
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alice

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 10:50 am

What is old-age now?
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dkchristi
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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 2:04 pm

Old age was when my job applications stopped bringing interviews. Old age was when men stopped asking to know me better and no longer ask me to dance. Old age is when my thumb all of a sudden is in pain like it's sprained and I can't open a jar. Old age is when my son can't understand why I am not working and no matter how many times I explain how much effort I have put into the job search, he still considers me slacking. I have pretty much given up...the few interviews I have had were just debilitating. Old age is when the thought of camping out and sleeping in a bag on the ground gives me the chills. Old age is when I bought a Cambridge bike with a comfortable seat, big tires, no crossbar at all, straight handlebars, few gears and light. Old age is dreading an airplane flight of over 4 hours (and even that is not a pleasure). Old age is senior citizen's discounts. Old age is being called "mam." Old age is hiring someone to paint the bathroom because I don't want to stand on the ladder to paint the ceiling. Old age is clipping coupons because my savings for "old age" were spent on an ill family member and I have to depend on Social Security and small pension. Old age is worrying that as insurance and taxes go up I may have to give up my house. Old age is worry. Old age is solitary. Old age is giving up skiing because a broken leg is inevitable and unworkable. Old age is preferring not to drive after dark because my eyes tire.

Old age is choosing the work I want to do. Old age is choosing the friends with whom I wish to spend time. Old age is having the time to drive to Michigan instead of fly. Old age is not getting up with an irritating alarm. Old age is the freedom to procrastinate. Old age is free membership in a gym with the Advantage plan. Old age is liking people for who they are, not what they do. Old age is often grandchildren, another chance to do things right. Old age is appreciating each day as a gift. Old age is finding joy in a $2.00 coupon, a two for one meal and the free concerts at the mall and the park. Old age is laughing out loud. Old age is crying. Old age is getting help loading the groceries in the car. Old age is smiling at anyone and loving everyone. Old age is control of time and responsibilities. Old age is the freedom to try new things and not be upset when they don't turn out. Old age is freedom in many ways tempered by its challenges. It is far better than the alternative!
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Al Stevens
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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 2:37 pm

When the doctor starts calling me "young fellow." When the girls at Hooters don't hesitate to greet me with a hug. When tough guys in biker bars want to be my friend rather than start a fight. When I can spend an hour in a rocking chair with a cat in my lap. When I don't care if my wife doesn't put her makeup on. When there is no urgency to get things done.

When my kids ask where I keep the will. When everybody at the Moose Lodge is younger. When Rogaine, Grecian Formula, and Viagra don't make a difference. When I look in the mirror and I'm shaving my father. When I can no longer trust a fart.

I'll let you know when I get there.

 
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Don Stephens
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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 2:57 pm

alice wrote:
What is old-age now?

You've reached old-age when you think you have! (It's a state of mind)

At 73, I feel like the last couple of months have given me a fresh start.
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Betty Fasig
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Betty Fasig

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 3:07 pm

I refutiate old age. I will go on. I will work. I will do what I can do for as long as I can do it. Albeit a little slower. Sad I will never give up. Never!
Love,
Betty pale
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Betty Fasig
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Betty Fasig

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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 3:46 pm

Dear Al,
I imagine that you will have a young heart all your days. It is a nice sense of humor that keeps one on the young side. I find that really old people without a humous bone, take them selves seriously and consider that other people should do, as well. But, you know old people are funny. To take themselves, their whole terrible life, all their relations, all their hopes and dreams with a lot of grains of salt would be better than the blanket of doom many old people put upon their families as they sit there in their chair awaiting death. There should be a magic rocket in that chair that lifts them off to their awaited doom forthwith.
Love,
Betty
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Abe F. March
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PostSubject: Re: How Often Do You Call Your Parents?   How Often Do You Call Your Parents? EmptySun Jan 08, 2012 9:42 pm

I once saw a picture of a Headstone. On it was written,
"John Doe
Died - age 21
Buried - age 61"

The inference is clear.
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