From Mme Martin to Sr Marie-Dosithée CF 138 - August 31, 1875


From Mme Martin to her sister

August 31, 1875

I was delighted by our trip to Lisieux. I have a sister-in-law who has a kindness and a sweetness that are incomparable. Marie says that she doesn’t know her to have any faults, and neither do I. I find that Isidore, in spite of all his problems, is very happy to have such a wife. It would take a long time to tell you her virtues, but that will be for later.

I assure you that I love her as much as a sister, she seems to feel the same way and shows my children an almost maternal affection. She showed them every possible attention and did everything to make our lives pleasant. If I seemed worried, she looked at me with sympathy, this seemed to hurt her. Marie quickly came over to say to me, “Mama, please, look more cheerful. My aunt thinks you’re sad, and she’s hurt over it.” I answered her, “Leave me alone, I can’t do better.” And I reproach myself for it!

Monday we were in the countryside. I went there reluctantly to accompany the others. Then we settled in a meadow to rest, and during this time my sister-in-law secretly went to prepare a snack for us. When she brought it to us, I was so upset at the trouble she went to that I was far from showing appropriate gratitude. She contented herself with laughing at my apparent coldness.

Oh well, I’m truly not very pleasant. Fortunately, I’m still willing to admit it! But if I don’t know how to show signs of affection, I feel the sentiments inside. I believe I wish for my brother’s prosperity more than mine. I have a burning desire to see him happy, him and his wife, and I would be ready to make every sacrifice for their happiness.

If I didn’t have a home and children, I would live only for them, and I would give them all the money I earn. But since I can’t do that, God will provide. Certainly, people like them are bound to succeed, and I have complete confidence in them. Unfortunately, poor Isidore has made hardly any profit from his drug business, and yet he works hard. This saddens me for him.

© Society of St. Paul / Alba House 


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