How does Mae Tuck deal with her immortality?

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Tuck Everlasting, written by Natalie Babbitt, is thought of as a piece of classic children's literature. In this story, Babbitt explores the theme of immortality—which is not as desirable as one might think. This is the story of Winnie Foster, a young girl who runs away from home, and her encounters with the Tuck family. The Tuck family, Angus, Mae, Jesse, and Miles, have found a spring of youth and are immortal.

Mae Tuck, the matriarch of the Tuck family, has an interesting viewpoint of immortality. Mae is very straightforward and enjoys the simple things of life, like her music box. Immortality is just another part of life in Mae's opinion. Mae also does not expect anything from her immortality, unlike many others who would want to exploit living forever to become rich or famous-such as the Man in the Yellow Suit. Mae understands that her situation provides more time to care for her family and to continue living the way she has lived for many years. Although Mae is at peace with her own immortality, she does not want Winnie to drink from the spring because she understands that with this immortality come many challenges.

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She handles it in a pretty matter-of-fact kind of a way. Mae's a very down-to-earth, practical woman, and her immortality simply adds to that. She's accepted life as an immortal and all that it brings; she certainly seems to handle life a lot better than Angus. An immortal existence, for Mae, is one without illusions, without fantasies or dreams. As nothing much will ever change, that makes it all the more essential to concentrate on the important things in life, such as family. But this doesn't mean that immortality makes Mae selfish; far from it. She doesn't want Winnie to drink from the eternal spring, not because she doesn't want to share it, but because she knows all about the many challenges involved in being immortal. Indeed, she feels so strongly about this that she's even prepared to kill the man in the yellow suit to protect Winnie, someone she's come to regard as one of the family.

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