She doesn’t feel well lately, and always predicted, “You’ll be the death of me yet.” But is it really our fault Mom is falling apart, or did she do this to herself?
The poor woman’s headaches, probably due to “Reverse Ocular Syndrome,” otherwise known as “eyes in the back of her head,” must have caused confusion because she would ask, “Who are you and where is my sweet girl? You’d better just get on out of here and not come back until you find my child.”
Sometimes it was so bad, Mom didn’t even know who she was. “Do I look like your maid?” “Do I look like a fool?” “Do I look like your personal chauffeur?” This confusion carried over to her inability to make a decision. “You can just go to church wearing your pajamas for all I care. — “Wait! Don’t you dare wear that!”
Bless her heart, Mom’s physical health is also on the decline. She never paid attention while carrying stacks of laundry which caused her to step on our toys and gave her a terrible limp. When she crawled under our bed to retrieve half eaten snacks, lost homework or the terrified cat, it always gave her a hitch in her get-along. She endured freezing temperatures at our ball games and band contests, then nearly suffered heat stroke on Girl Scout hikes.
Why she put herself through so much torment, we’ll never know.
Premature wrinkles formed around her mouth where she forced a smile through tense teacher—parent conferences. Her brow was furrowed where she glared at us from the choir loft, and she squarely blamed us for the creases as well as gray hairs. “This one is from George, this one from Jim, and this entire wrinkly mess around my eyes is the result of your sister’s senior year of high school.” If Mom had only gone to bed on time, she would have looked and felt better, but every morning, she’d say, “I was up all-night thinking about these so-called friends of yours.” Or “I couldn’t sleep a wink knowing your brother was still out doing who knows what with you know who.”
Sadly, Mom’s hearing was fading because she often asked us to repeat ourselves. “Say that again, go ahead and look me in the eye and say it one more time. Then, I’ll have you repeat it again when your father comes home.”
It’s no wonder she felt poorly, because Mom’s diet was so strange. She loved the burnt piece of toast, the smallest piece of chicken and thought the sandwich that had fallen on the floor was, “just fine.”
The first sign of mental distress was when she forgot who we were. “Ralph— Jack — Fido — Sue! You know who I mean. Get over here now.” “Where’s the thingy, the . . . oh, you know what I mean!” She also wandered around the house asking, “Why did I come in here?”
Happy Mother's Day to all my readers who are wonderful mothers or those who are the product of having a great Mom!
This story first appeared in Advance Media Publications