Tags

Continued from Fighting back desperation

Yry’s November 20th birthday greeting from her father hints at a brief face-to-face visit but expresses concern and bafflement about her whereabouts. He wrote the letter, but hung onto it for several days, waiting to hear from Yry and to divine where to send the greeting. She would have been about seven months pregnant by this time—and showing, no matter how hard she wanted to obfuscate the facts.

Dear Yry,

Let me wish you many happy returns of the day, success and what is most important contentment which can be reached only by learning slowly to harmoniously adjust oneself to life, a difficult task, a goal fraught with bitter and overt experiences. You are not just an average person; you live your life through your heart, and this will cause you many a heartache in your life.

I was very glad to see you after so many years and to find that the association with self-satisfied mediocre people of unlimited selfishness could not kill in you the core of an inquiring and searching mind and will, and that under a seemingly hard and abrupt exterior there is a beating heart of understanding for poor humanity and its problems, still somewhat full of preconceived prejudices and generalizations but willing to investigate and to learn. I comprehend your inclination to love animals. You have not yet learned to drink of the well of human suffering, selfishness and egotism, and to assimilate what there is good in contact with our neighbors who give us constant food for thought and create in us the hunger for inquiry and exploration in the realms of godly of humans.” [The lecture continues ad nauseam.]

I am enclosing a cheque for $20 as a birthday present, the other $20 a weekly allowance and from today to be followed weekly. I hope you will have a good time and will enjoy your liberty and youth, and your studies.

Don’t be too hypochondriac. There is no being who is feeling one day as good as another. We are all influenced by emotions, even the animals, to a certain extent, weather, events impress us and influence our bodily well-being. … And let us hear from you. Your mother is thinking of you all day, misses you and is looking forward to every line you may and will write her. She is nervous and unfortunately worries too much about the house; so don’t forget to give her the pleasure of hearing from you.

With many good wishes and hearty greetings, lovingly your father. 

[Note from Norah on back] We received your letter of the 25th and I am writing soon. What are the results? You have not told us. My love to Elouise and regards to Jim.  Much love to you my Dear write soon again. Lovingly Norah.

It does sounds as if perhaps Yry made a quick trip to New York City, which is why the correspondence from Immigration and Naturalization got so tangled. But she was clearly holding her parents at bay, withholding information, details, probably too nervous and exhausted to deal with their reactions to her situation.

Continued