It is not easy to say how much I suffered during the night and morning—The child taken so suddenly, my Wife in no condition to bear so much anxiety and compelled to rely upon our own resources for a remedy. In a strange house so far as all the assistance we required was concerned and giving trouble, I felt quite unhappy. Then there is such a change in the house that I hardly know Medford again. Mr. Brooks himself appears to me depressed by his own difficulty, a recurrence of a complaint in his knee which arose from an injury received some years ago, as well as from the changes about him. I accompanied him to Boston as the child had taken medicine and seemed somewhat better. Little Peter, Mrs. Gorham Brooks’ child had been affected in just the same way.
My hours in Boston were anxious, and the weather was very warm. I was engaged in a number of little occupations relating to money affairs and had an hour’s conversation with Mrs. Frothingham in 120which I spoke very unreservedly of matters as I viewed them. Such is the vanity of human expectation. The plan which I had supposed would fix the comfort of Mr. Brooks’ declining years, turns out the least eligible of any that he has pursued.
I returned to dinner with Mr. Brooks, the child had seen the Dr. and he had relieved very much all our apprehensions. The Afternoon was quietly passed. I looked over the North American Review, more especially my Article which I find much less altered from the original than was the preceding one. It must now take its chance with the public. My expectations of literary success have been humbled to such an extent that I expect little praise, and my peculiar views together with my name lead me to anticipate some little censure. To counterbalance this I have nothing but a clear conscience. Evening, there were visitors. Mr. and Mrs. Stetson and the Misses Osgood.1
Rev. Caleb Stetson, Congregational minister at Medford, his wife, and the Misses Lucy and Elizabeth Osgood are briefly characterized at vol. 3:76–77.