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Letter to Helen Keller from Anne Sullivan Macy  (n.d.)

Transcription of Letter

Date: 1916
To: Helen Keller
From: Anne S. Macy in Lake Placid, NY?


You are never out of my thoughts. They keep me awake at night, and daylight brings no satisfactory answers to them. When I married John I thought I had solved the greatest of them. He promised me that in case of my death, which in the natural course would come before his, he would be a brother to you, look after your happiness, and take charge of your affairs. For years my mind was at rest on this – to you and me – most important of matters. But ever since he left us, I have worried. He seemed, and still seems, the only one to take care of you when I go. Perhaps, dear, it would be best all round to let him do what he can to make things a little easier for you when I am gone. He understands your business better than any one else. And would it not be better in every way to let the suffering, the unhappiness, that has come to all three of us die with me? You still love John. I am sure you do love him. Such love as we have felt for John never dies altogether. For my own part, I think of him constantly; and since I have been ill much of the bitterness has gone from my thoughts of him. I wish you could forgive and forget too. You would be much happier if you could, Helen. If that cannot be, why I suppose you will have to depend upon lawyers to advise you in business matters. Mr. Raymond is, I think, a good man and would always do all in his power for you. I have often wished that you knew Phillips better. If you would write to him oftener you would soon get to feel nearer to him. I think he is a very fine boy and if you give him a chance he may prove a good friend as well as kind brother. Of course, dear, life will never be just the same again for any of us – it never is after these great changes – we cannot expect it. We can only try to be brave and patient for the sake of those who will have to live with us and take care of us. I am trying very hard to get well for your sake, for the sake of the things you want to do. I think you have guessed from Polly's letters that I have tuberculosis. I can scarcely believe it; for while my cough is nagging, and the pain in my side is continuous, I don't feel ill. I have a good appetite, and I haven't lost weight. But I must have the dread disease for all that. A specimen of my sputum was sent to the laboratories at Albany. The report returned was, "Positive pulmonary affection." There were other details he didn't communicate to me, but he told Polly definitely what was to be done. Polly is wonderful to me. When I spoke of the expense of spending a year at Placid, she offered her services gratis, she said she would stay with me no matter what happened. But do not worry, I am sure the prospect will brighten as the days go by.



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