Letter # 53 - Jan Rubingh’s first wife, Jaantje, died in April, 1882. Jaantje’s relatives are caring for the two daughters, Mettje and Betje. In this letter, Jan’s mother tactfully responds to his letter stating that he intended to seek a new wife and inquired from her whether she thinks it may be too soon.
Wildervank, July, 1882
Dearly loved son and little daughter,
Through the undeserved goodness of the Lord we have received both of your last letters in a generally good state of health, and we noted from that you and your little children are all doing well. I thought I should just first write you a note to let you know that the payout of the inheritance has not yet occurred. When you put matters in the hands of some people, it doesn’t help. Now that Uncle Berend is involved, things go both ways, and so now there is an heir from Aunt Dorkie’s side making a claim on the money. And now those folks can’t solve it amicably. Now they say the estate is ready, but as long as this problem is not solved they can’t sign the final document. So the whole business must wait for that.
There are so many just waiting for the inheritance from Uncle Hendrik, and it was supposed to be paid out on Wednesday, July 26, but there is no news as yet. If it happens, Grandfather will see to it that money is sent to you. I hope that it won’t take very long now. Often there is nothing to be done about it, but the Notary had said that they would work as hard as they could, but Uncle Berend was causing the delay.
Now, dear ones, I hope that you may receive something. The Lord willing, when we learn something about it you will likely hear some news quickly.
Dominee and Juffrouw are not in Wildervank, but we expect her the 20th or 21st as was stated in the Courant. But I think we will get the news. I just hope they will come over in good health.
Now, dear one, you made clear to us your intention. You wrote that it “will surprise you that I came so quickly to this decision.” Now, my dear, there are things to consider. In the situation you are in now, people may often make plans to make life more manageable. We still grieve here over the loss of your dear wife, and even though we never met her, I still felt an inner bond with her. So I think this time of reflection on her passing is somewhat short. Also, dear one, who knows what can happen in a marriage, especially if there are children! I don’t want you to have greater burdens than you have now.
They will be there soon enough. I think that your wife’s family, if they are aware of this, will also be very surprised, because it is unusually quick. Now, dear one, I don’t want to interfere with your intention. That I must be so far distant from you in your situation is sometimes a great pain for me. If I could easily come over to you, I would not think about it very long! But the Lord reigns. Also in this matter, I want to just rest in Him, but I sometimes feel that another law in my limbs wars against the law of my mind and makes me a prisoner of sin. My dear one, may the Lord preserve us both through His spirit, so that with all our needs and concerns we may find our refuge in him, for he himself says in his word, Counsel and Life are mine; I am Wisdom; mine is the power.
Now dear one, greet the people you are with for me. I am glad that you can be there with your little Mettje. She must write us once again. Kiss your little Bettje for me. I hope that we will be writing you soon again and that you may obtain some funds. I did write you earlier approximately how much it was. I was not clear as to what would be taken out for expenses, but we will see. I better just stop now.
Now dear one, may the Lord be our Counselor and Guide on all our ways. Now that I have wished for you the indispensable blessing of the Lord for body and soul, I am you loving Mother, M J Boer.
Be greeted by our Heichiena. As far as I know, the family is all well. Write back soon.