Sunday 25 August 2019

Mum (104) rings in birthday with a special gift and call

Together: Eileen Macken (82) meets her mother, Elizabeth, after over 60 years of searching
Together: Eileen Macken (82) meets her mother, Elizabeth, after over 60 years of searching
Niamh Horan

Niamh Horan

It was the story that captured the hearts of a nation.

And yesterday, 104-year old Elizabeth celebrated her momentous birthday in Scotland with her favourite flowers and an emotional phone call from her 82-year-old daughter Eileen Macken in Ireland.

Speaking to the Sunday Independent, Ms Macken said she had the special treat lined up to help her mother celebrate the occasion.

"I sent her a big bouquet of flowers in the colours that she loves - and would you believe it, she has the very same taste as me," she said.

"Then I called her and I had all my family around me as we chatted."

Speaking about finding her long-lost mother after a 60-year search, she said: "This will never, ever leave me. It has filled my heart where there was a missing piece and I will have that forever now."

Commenting on the fact her neighbourhood must be the luckiest in Ireland, given that another local won the Lotto jackpot there last month, she said: "This is more than winning the Lotto.

"You get money and you spend it and those things don't last, but this will never, ever leave me."

On her first visit to her mother last week, she said: "I discovered she is the happiest person and I know she has a great family looking after her. I just wished I could have put her in my pocket and taken her home."

Now planning another visit in the coming weeks, Ms Macken, who grew up in an orphanage, says that, despite all the missing years, she doesn't have a single question.

"I don't want to know her history," she said. "I just want to be with her. I don't care what happened in the past, minding her and just being with her means far more to me than any information."

On the countless prayers through decades in the dark, she said: "I certainly do believe in God and I'd say he had a hand in this. To me it's one of the wonders of the world."

Asked what others could take from her experience, she said: "I would tell anyone with mammies and daddies that no matter what happens just love them because family is more important than anything."

Read more: Woman, 81, meets 103-year-old mother for first time

Read more: Eileen (81) finally finds her 103-year-old mother

Sunday Independent

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