My ex-mother in law, who I usually refer to as my MIL, is here in town. She hasn't had an easy go of it at all. Both she and my FIL, who passed in 2004, had polio as teenagers, and they strived to live as normal lives as possible. She's in an assisted living facility here in town.
She and I had a great relationship when I was married. She tried really hard to let us make decisions that were best for us, as opposed to ones where they would benefit somehow. Very selfless that way. After the divorce, though, the responsibility of communication has fallen to me. Period. She doesn't call, and if I don't call her, I don't talk to her.
I know she's being her "I don't want to bother anyone" self, but I'm busy! I forget to contact her, and then a couple of months go by and I feel guilty. Every time I see her, I tell her, you can call me if you need anything, or if you want to get together. And she says, "OK dear", and never calls.
So I called her yesterday, and will pop over there for a visit tomorrow. I always feel like I've done the right thing after I've visited, but still guilty that I don't make more time to see her. I think I'll bring her some flowers. I bought some for myself the other day, and it reminds me how much I like having fresh flowers around the house. They were even fair-trade, so I can assuage my guilt over carbon footprints, and slave labor and such. Life's a little complicated sometimes.