I’m Between Stories

About seven years ago, the first warning sign that my mother wasn’t herself was her inclination to comply. She would ask permission (it seemed) for small, simple things. She’d look to her husband, “is this OK?”

It pricked my senses. What was happening?

I didn’t see in him as desiring to control her. They had already been through her first round of cancer together. He took on his new role and became caregiver. It didn’t make sense.

No. This was something else, this was the first symptom of Alzheimer’s settling in. Dementia has

2019-04-14T11:50:13+00:00Categories: Grown Ups & Downs|Tags: , , |2 Comments

Calling My Bluff

 

A few months ago, a simple picture of me as a child surfaced and, it surprised me when my psyche shattered into a million broken pieces. I grieved, I gnashed, I wept…for that child, that sweet girl with bright blond hair and a silly grin. I wanted to hug that child and smooth her hair. I’d kind of pushed out all the recollections of that child.

Quote I saw floating around this week. Ah, yes…that.

As I’ve mentioned, even recently, if there was ever a “complicated” mother-daughter relationship, ours qualifies.

And Now…

Last week

My Mother, Tennessee Williams, & Alzheimer’s Disease

. My mother is a character from a Tennessee Williams play...but without a Southern accent. I am her second child, born when she was 16 years old. Her childhood cut short and never spoken of in a way that imparted a sense of safety or innocence.

Each man she ran away with was hoped to be the rescue from the last. She gave up every child she bore, to some degree. And in each tragedy she was the faultless victim, bearing the bruises without bearing the blame.

She’s also hilarious. No matter how many times she told a joke, she could make it look like she just thought of it. As a bartender or waitress she told countless anecdotes with ease and entertained like she was under a spotlight rather than serving up the daily special. She’d spontaneously break into song and dance. “I’m not a ham,” she’d say, “A ham can be cured.”

I believe my mother’s highest ambition has always been to be liked.

2013-11-20T09:31:56+00:00Categories: Grown Ups & Downs|Tags: , |8 Comments