Skip to main content

Don’t Let Anger Be Your Legacy

On January 16 my father died. One month later both my former in-laws died within a week of each other. I loved them very much, and they loved me.

They were all old and ill, so none of the deaths were a surprise, but it was still sad. Our grief was deepened by the actions these people had taken before they passed away.

Each of them had changed their wills and/or life insurance beneficiaries to eliminate one or more of their children from inheriting parts of their estates.

When I called my father’s life insurance company to get the paperwork to file a claim, I was told they could not give me any information because I was not listed on his policy.

I asked if my brother was listed, and they said yes, and he would have to call them himself.

I was angry, hurt and frustrated but said, “He’s in jail.”

And the lady on the phone said, “I was hoping you wouldn’t say that.”

So, I was the one handling my father’s meager estate and fielding phone calls from the nursing home, funeral home, Medicare Recovery office, and collection agent for the nursing home. I was also trying to recover the little bit of money he had in a bank in San Antonio without a POD listed (payable on death). That money is still sitting there.

My father cutting me out that way was a slap in the face for me. One that I did not deserve. It was him being selfish and irresponsible even after his death. Anger was his legacy to me.

Something similar happened with my inlaws’ wills. What should have been an estate in good shape was in fact full of confusion, resentments and misinformation. Since she had Alzheimer’s and his health had been declining for years, there was no excuse for the estate to be left in such disarray.

I won’t go into the details about this out of my respect for the people I love who are still wrestling with this mess. But it makes me sad that anger was their legacy to their loved ones, too.

Please, if you are estranged from a child or grandchild, don’t let that carry on into their lives. Do you want your children and grandchildren to think of you in the future with hurt and pain and grief that cannot heal? Surely not.

Don’t let anger be your legacy, please.


Donna T. said…
It happens more that you know! Sorry you are having to experience the pain and disappointment.

Donna T.

Popular posts from this blog

Joseph Cornell’s Boxes

Boxes by surrealist artist Joseph Cornell
“Shadow boxes become poetic theaters or settings wherein are metamorphosed the element of a childhood pastime.”
Joseph Cornell was not a sculptor, a draftsman, or a painter. This internationally renowned modern artist never had professional training. He was first and foremost a collector. He loved to scour old book shops and secondhand stores of New York looking for souvenirs, theatrical memorabilia, old prints and photographs, music scores, and French literature. 

Cornell was wary of strangers. This led him to isolate himself and become a self-taught artist. Although he expressed attraction to unattainable women like Lauren Bacall, his shyness made romantic relationships almost impossible. In later life his bashfulness verged toward reclusiveness, and he rarely left the state of New York. However, he preferred talking with women, and often made their husbands wait in the next room when he discussed business with them. He also had numerous friend…

How to Clean Copper After Annealing with a Recipe for Non-Toxic Pickling

This is not your grandmother’s pickling recipe. I’m pickling copper bangle bracelets instead. As you can see by the previous post, I’ve been annealing copper bracelets this week (my first time was Sunday evening). To give you a point of reference, these bangles were dark brown, almost black, when I put them in the pickling solution.

Today I used a recipe for a non-toxic pickle to clean the oxidation from the copper. It was simple: 1 cup white vinegar and 1 tablespoon table salt. I heated it in the microwave for 30 seconds in a glass jar and then put it on my husband’s coffee cup warmer. To test it I stuck a piece of annealed 6 gauge wire in it, and it worked beautifully. I only had to brush a little of the black stuff off, and it was bright, shiny copper again. Better yet, the brushing didn’t take a lot of effort.

Feeling very successful I doubled the batch and dropped all six bangles in and left them for about 15 minutes. When I came back the black was flaking off nicely and floating…

Eulogy for a Difficult Mother - what I wish I’d said at my mother’s funeral

I fell in love with my Mother for the first time on the night she died. It was May 20 of this year. Less than two months ago.

That doesn’t mean I didn’t love her before. I believe that all children love their mothers, but all mothers don’t necessarily love their children. My mother was a loving woman, but my sadness is that she loved her husbands more than she loved her children. In spite of that I always loved her. Every day of my life.

Mother had a difficult time living with bipolar disorder in a time when the only treatment was hospitalization and useless counseling, and the medications for it were toxic. It wasn’t until the last decade of her life that everything came together for her, and she was able to live well and with some peace.

On the evening before she died her husband called to say she had not awakened that morning but she was still breathing. Her doctor told us two or three years ago that she would not suffer with renal failure and that she would gradually lose energy,…