My dear Theo,
As agreed, I’m writing to you again today, now that the doctor’s been back.1 The first night was very peaceful, and since a great deal depends on rest, the doctor was very pleased that Ma had been able to keep her leg completely still so that everything that had been set had stayed in its place.
We asked again exactly what it was, and the thighbone definitely is broken just below the head of the femur.
You know that I was just on the point of paying off one thing and another with that money you sent. Obviously I’ve now said that since there will be all sorts of extra expenditure for Pa — Pa must go ahead and use it, and the other things will just have to be deferred (and it was by chance that I hadn’t sent it off yet).2 It will certainly be a long time before Ma’s better. Pa will undoubtedly give you more details when he writes. With a handshake in thought.

Ever yours,

Saturday morning

Wanted to add here that last night was peaceful too, and that Ma slept quite a bit. She sends you her regards again. But there’s a lot that will have to be dealt with, brother, before everything’s all right again. Willemien is doing famously, and it’s fortunate that she’s at home.
Lies is rather feeble — she felt very faint again yesterday.
Theo, do think again hard about whether you might come up with an idea as to how I could earn some money one way or another. Money will be needed, and we should also look again at the possibility of doing something with my work. If only so that I myself can pay for the outgoings involved in the work, and you can use for Ma what you would otherwise give me. Pa will certainly have told you that the doctor said that at best it will be six months before she can walk.
I already told you that I’m working on watercolours of the weavers here.3 I’ll try to get some finished. However, I can’t give all my time to them now, and have to be at home a lot — at least for the next few days.4
Well, I’ll send a postcard once the doctor has been again today. Regards.


Br. 1990: 426 | CL: 353
From: Vincent van Gogh
To: Theo van Gogh
Date: Nuenen, Friday, 18 and Saturday, 19 January 1884

1. This doctor was A.L.K.H. van de Loo.
2. Van Gogh had previously told the son of the supplier Furnée that he would send money on or about 20 January (see letter 421).
a. Means: ‘onkosten’ (expenses).
3. Van Gogh had written this in letter 419.
4. After ‘tijd’ (days) Van Gogh crossed out: ‘Anyway I shall do my best’ (‘Enfin ik zal er mijn best voor doen’).