February 13 1954

Ottawa Civic Hospital

13th Feb. 1954

Dearest Mummy,
I am so pleased with myself because tomorrow I am going home! Dr. K said Monday, but when I asked him if I couldn’t go home tomorrow as a Valentine, he laughed & said all right. So tonight is my last night in the hospital & I am feeling quite excited & restless! Looking back on the time it’s very difficult to think of each day as they were also exactly alike that no one stands out from the other- some of them seemed a week long at the time, but now it is just difficult for me to realize it is the middle of Feb. when I took ill in the middle of Jan. When I go home I am to stay in bed for a week, but can go to the bathroom – no more bed pans thank goodness! Then the next week I can begin getting up & gradually doing things. It seems an awfully long slow process & I would never have believed it before. I have to stay on a special diet till about the end of April (no fat & high protein) & not one drink for 6 months & then only an occasional sip for a year! What a liver can do to you! However I am thankful that the worst is all over now, and Dr. K. has been very kind & at least all this treatment etc. should prevent me from having a jaundiced outlook!! Dr. K. says I have been a very good patient & Cec says he’ll beat me if I don’t do exactly as I’m told at home, so it looks as if I’m going to have to go on being a good patient! Claire is still coming next week & probably a bit while I’m getting on my feet.
I have your letter mailed 1st Feb. to thank you for & Cec says there is another one from you at home – he just dropped by for a minute on Fri. from work so I didn’t have it with him but I will get it tomorrow. I was so delighted to hear the news of Nan’s baby. I wrote to her yesterday & do you know, I don’t owe anyone a letter! Of course in 3 weeks I should have cleared up the arrears (spelling?!) but everyone here has been so good about writing & sending flowers & mags. that I have been kept busy writing thank you notes as well and writing in bed isn’t the easiest of occupations! I had lovely daffodils & yellow tulips from Phyl & Alex & a beautiful cyclamen plant from Nan & Don Ramsay which I hope to take home with me. I got a cute note from Boris cut in the shape of a heart with “To my Valentine” on. Did I tell you that he & Joan got engaged at the beginning of the year & I think plan to be married in May? I am kind of sorry I don’t like Joan more but maybe we will like her better as time goes on & anyway we would try to like anyone for Boris’ sake as he is so nice. It was so funny though, when I first came in here there was a little nurse just finished her 3 yr. training- she was only on this ward a couple of days & just before she left one day we got chatting & discovered she used to work at NRC & we knew lots of the same people. Not only that but after she left, she met Boris & was his girlfriend for quite a while I gathered & she was very keen, but from what she said I rather think Boris’s mother didn’t approve & they parted. She is engaged to be married this summer to a young Dr. & is all over it, but I was so mad she was moved as she was all set to tell me the whole story!
To return to your letter & Nan’s baby, I am so pleased as quite a few people have mentioned in letters (Mary Stuart, Dottie etc.) that they thought it would be a good thing if Nan & Dick had more children & certainly now that Sandy is going to school this year, Nan shouldn’t be too busy. I expect she would like a girl as you say, (but on the other hand not everyone can be as clever as me!!!!) but probably Sandy would like a boy to play with – so I don’t suppose they mind too much. Talking of children you were asking if Charlie was walking yet- well he has taken the odd step when he wasn’t thinking & will sometimes walk from the sofa to the table, but he isn’t exactly walking yet!! Tottering maybe! He howls loudly if we sit him on Linda’s potty chair so we’re not bothering. One reason he howls is that his little bottom is so slim & tiny that it threatens to slip through the hole & he doesn’t feel safe! He doesn’t have a little round fat smacky bottom like Lindy & her Mama! Charlie says quite a few words now but he doesn’t have quite as clear enunciation as Lindy had right from the beginning. He says “ca” (car) “bye-bye” & of course our names & “cook-cook” (cookie) “mi’k” for his bottle & when he is finished his dinner I always used to say to him “Charlie made it a-a-a-all gone!”& he now repeats the exact intonation of the “all gone” but it sounds more like “a-a-a- ba”! Lindy is just as precise & exact in her words as ever & sometimes if Charlie says that & there still some left she will say “It’s not really quite all gone”! She uses the future tense “Shall we go upstairs, Mummy?” & is even beginning to differentiate between my accent & Cec’s & tease me about it!! She sometimes says “Mummy says apple sa-uce”or “Mummy says toma-ato but Daddy says tomayto”! If I say “agen” she always corrects me & tells me it’s “again” & it’s really so funny! She’s a great little mimic & one day told me “Lee says ‘Berry – Berry’ but Jim says ‘Barry” (the latter in a big deep voice!) & it wasn’t till then that I realized Lee did say “Berry”!
Talking of Lee I had a note from her & she seems to be feeling well again. After the mis. they took her to hospital for a “tidy up” but she was home the same day I think. Apparently she had a bad dose of flu before Christmas & the baby hadn’t developed since then so it was probably a good thing she did mis. She says now that she feels better than she has for months. Poor Margie has both Tommy & Danny down with measles now – doesn’t she have the worst time! And she has been so sweet writing to me 3 or 4 times a week, as if she didn’t have enough to do. Joyce is feeling better now but has had a long miserable time with sinus trouble. Cec had Cy come over & keep him company one Sat. evening & last Sat. Pete & Lu came, so he enjoyed that – he says the house seems too empty when the children go to bed. Les & Joyce have 3 girls- the smallest is Lois, about 3 mths. older than Charlie.
I was sorry to hear about Sam Dorman- I didn’t know he was so ill. Imagine him gone & old Auntie Phine hanging on – isn’t it strange. I was glad to have news of Janie & Billo- poor kids, what a sad time they are having & they must feel so badly at having to be apart just now. I was sorry for the poor cousin in London, Ont. who had all his plans spoiled- such a shame after having waited so long & made so many plans.
Which brings me to your plans for our W.I. vacation this year. I am afraid it is all a daydream because we just couldn’t possibly afford it. You know Cec has only been working for a bit over 2 years & we started those 2 years with nothing – not like a young couple who have savings for furniture etc. In that 2 years we’ve had 2 babies, bought furniture, had 2 operations on Charlie, big dentist bills & now on top of it all, this business of mine. The insurance pays some of the doctor bills & hospital, but not all & on top of that we pay Claire $5.00 a day, so we just have no spare cash. Before we can plan a big trip, we must have some sort of financial security & savings in case of emergency, which we haven’t got now. We have planned to join a Savings Group which will take so much out of Cec’s pay each month, so that we can gradually save for a down payment on a house & Cec says maybe in a couple of years we can plan something. He was saving some of his vacation & carrying it over, so that when the time came we could have a nice long stay, but I’m afraid it’s now being used up looking after babies while wife is ill. I know that you long to see the children, but actually they will enjoy a trip much more when they are a little older & even now we’d have to pay for Linda as it under 2 they go free on Airlines. I certainly wouldn’t like to come without Cec – imagine not having my husband to show off to everyone!
Talking of showing off my husband reminds me of your little story of Pegs & Jeanie not hitting it off too well these days. I feel kind of sorry for Peggy – although probably if I knew them well I would like Jean better. But I think Peggy has a bit of an inferiority complex & I can’t blame her. If I had 2 older sisters just loaded with looks & charm & a younger one bouncing with self-confidence, I’d probably feel the same, & Alex doesn’t seem to be the kind of man who would boost her ego much. Altogether I feel poor Peggy can’t be too happy, but I hope things smooth over & she and Jeanie make it up, because as you say she has no one of her own age to be a real friend.

I was very interested in your letter all about the Archbishop of York’s visit – he wasn’t the one who was at York when I was – it was the big fat one- William? – he died anyway I know. I saved your Gov. House invitation for the scrapbook – I’ll maybe do some of that next week. Tell Auntie Moo that my Italian meal was de-e-e-licious! You used to like things like Spanish Rice & the Mazzotti is much the same type of thing only with noodles instead of rice & meat & mushrooms & tomatoes etc. The Zabaglione is beaten over hot water, so it’s thick & fluffy & you eat it with a spoon – I’m sure you would like it – you can either have it warm as we did or chilled.
Talking of the scrapbook reminds me I haven’t sent the negatives you want yet, but I haven’t forgotten – I just haven’t had a chance. I will send them when I get home. Thank you so much too for the £10 you put in my account in England – I think I will send Harrods my measurements & get them to make me a really nice “Gor-ray” skirt & get maybe a nice jersey to match for the spring! Do you remember the old Gorray skirt I had (blue/grey/rust) & the rust twin set (children’s department!). I think the latter was from Harrods too, & anyway they all lasted for years & something like that will really boost my morale!

I think you should take your Income Tax money & you & A. Moo take a little holiday at the beach. Why don’t you? You both love the bathing so & haven’t had a holiday for ages.
I am so sorry I still haven’t done anything about the cord for your ear phone either- your letter came just about the time I took sick & I forgot all about it but I will get Cec to phone when I get home & I will Air Mail it. I hope it hasn’t inconvenienced you as I’m so glad that you’re used to the Aid now & find it a help. Goody goody for no more duty on the batteries!
Well it is nearly my bedtime now & the nurse has brought in my “snack”- sandwich & juice, & as supper is at 5 here, I am glad of it & the Dr. keeps telling me I must eat a lot! Tomorrow I will be sleeping in my own bed & all my little family nearby – such a nice thought!

Lots and lots of love from Cyn.

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