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The letters on the counter: a personal story

 Sheri A. Baron, at right, a Precinct 7 Town Meeting member, wrote the following essay, recollections of her late parents:

SheriBaron 200 61622

Tell people how much they mean to you – now. Tell them often, knowing that life can change without warning. Hug them, show them affection. If you are a distance away, send a text, an email or a letter. Just do it and send it, or you will have regrets. I know because I do.

I lost my mother 15 years ago. I sometimes need to  think a moment to land upon the exact date in November. My father, always a practical man, left me no excuse to forget the date – he died on my birthday five years ago.

Neither was sick before they died. Neither had been given a terrifying prognosis with a planned timetable for the months ahead. There was no warning. They just died. And every day since, I regret the fact that I didn’t tell them and show them often enough how much they meant to me.  

When my sister and I were growing up, we loved our parents, but we were kids, and kids just didn‘t tells their parents that they loved them very often. After college and settling 300 miles from my parents, I always wrote ‘I love you’ in letters and cards. By my 40s, it became the verbal postscript of every phone call and wave goodbye.

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