December 10, 2013 § 9 Comments
When Susan’s first husband Edwin died, she wrote to a friend, “My views of life and death are different from those of many.” By that she meant that she believed that ties with the deceased were not severed at death, and she could communicate with them through spiritualism (see Chapter 8 of Susan Lawrence: The Enigma in the Wright House). When her second husband Lawrence died, Susan suffered a serious breakdown and remained cloistered in the Lawrence House for the last half of 1913 and most of 1914 (see Chapter 11 of Susan Lawrence: The Enigma in the Wright House).
Carl Volkmann, my husband of 56 years, passed away October 11, 2013. I find myself searching for ways to cope with my new reality somewhere between Susan’s two approaches to widowhood. While I often feel Carl’s presence and even find myself talking to him on occasion, I do not plan to enlist the aid of a medium to exchange messages between us. Furthermore, I am not withdrawing from society. I am gradually resuming the activities I stopped when Carl needed my care at the end of his life. I have returned to my volunteer interpretive role at the Dana-Thomas House, and now I plan to go back to digging into documents from the past to illuminate the life of Susan Lawrence Dana more brightly through this blog. Stay tuned.