"Wasting away again in Mamasitaville.
Searchin' for some way this madness will halt
Some people say that there's nobody to blame,
But I know, somehow it's my fault!"
As part of my recurring posts, today's is another ride on my very own personal crazy train. I try to save some of my favorite snippets or interactions between mom and me and recount them here. It helps to keep me somewhat sane, keeps me from crying, gnashing my teeth, and beating my head against the wall and mainly is much cheaper than therapy. It also offers you some small insight about the genesis of my personal oddness. (Since my sons were quite small I always told them I was delightfully odd, not weird I think now they have removed the word "delightfully"from their description. Oh well!) And yes! I do rewrite song lyrics to fit whatever I am feeling at any given moment.
Tuesday: Got a call that Mom was going to her last ever gig with a church singing group she has been a part of for nearly 30 years. They sing both hymns and secular tunes to residents of nursing homes and have some props and limited choreography so the set has some cute visuals also. Mom is one of the original members (possibly the only one left) and has decided this needs to be her swan song. "Maybe, but I'll think about it over the summer and decide, but I might want to go back when it starts again in the fall. But I don't want to go back if that gal is still in it."
So we can begin a betting pool, (will she or will she not "retire"?) because I am pretty sure "that gal' (whoever she is) will still be in it next fall, since she has been a part of the group for at least the past 3 years. All we know about "that gal" is that she is a stranger, (meaning she lives on the Eastern side of town) she wears different clothes, (lots of diaphanous flowing blouses over camisoles) and she tries to take over (no clue on that one).
Wednesday: Mom was adamant about traveling to NYC with us Thursday for Son3's graduation. Each graduate was only given 2 tickets, so there was a good chance I might be unable to see the actual ceremony myself. Great huh? Too bad for me because she "needed" to see him graduate. (Turns out he was able to snag another ticketso I was able to go. Thank you to whomever's parents were unable to make it.). Meanwhile and prior to her packing there was a conversation about what she should take.
Mom: I am taking my black and cream suit to wear to the ceremony. Will that be ok?
Me: (Silently) I have fitted that damn suit on you at least 4 times this past month and every time you have said you are wearing it to graduation. Yes the suit will work!)
(Aloud) It will be fine Mom, but it's supposed to be hot so you might want to take your black dress too, just in case
Mom: No. I don't want to take the black dress. I don't need to pack anything else do I?
Me: (Silently) Pj's. underwear, hose, shoes, toothbrush?
(Aloud) That will be ok if you plan to wear exactly what you wear on the plane tomorrow when we fly home Saturday and if you plan on wearing your suit the entire day Friday. Graduation is at 11 and I am going back to the hotel and changing.
Mom: Well I figure I will need to wear something nice for dinner, so I thought I would keep my suit on.
Me: That's fine Mom, but Joe and I will change into something casual.
Mom: Won't we have to dress nicely for dinner?
Me: No ma'am. We will only go somewhere to eat where casual clothes are fine.
Mom: Oh then I guess I will take my suit and a pair of gray pants
So if you read in the paper of some octogenarian who was arrested at a restaurant near The Lincoln Center wearing nothing but gray pants, it was us!
(Fortunately at the last minute she actually packed some clothes.)
Thursday (In the Atlanta airport) "Wow there sure are a lot of people in here. Where do you think they are going?"
We are having this conversation as we are walking through the terminal to get to another terminal to catch our connecting flight. One of us is walking two steps ahead of the other and stopping to turn around every 2 minutes to ask a question about where someone is going or to point out some deficiency in their clothing, shoes, walk, or general appearance. (Did I mention She will not wear her hearing aids and talks loudly?) Meanwhile the other one of us is carrying the loud one's suitcase because the loud one did not want to pay the 25 dollar luggage fee, when it much easier for someone else to shlep it through the airport for her. (Did I also mention it is an old suitcase circa 1980 pre-wheels model?)
Me: No idea Mom except for people who get on the plane we're on and then we can guess most of them will be stopping in New York.
Mom: (Staring at a passersby) Why do you think that girl has pink hair, I don't like pink hair do you?
Me: I really don't care what color anyones hair is. If I were young I might try teal hair.
Mom: That would look geechy (A Mom made up word she has used since I was a teen for anything she doesn't like.)
Me: Then I guess we are lucky I am too old to do it. (Sometime this summer I am going to have teal colored hair even if it is just for one day so I can be both an irritant to her and look geechy. Yes I am the one who will nearly always poke the pig!)
Friday: Mom wore her wool houndstooth plaid suit to Son3's graduation. (She is cold natured and was afraid she would be chilled.) Graduation was at 11 am and was general admission so we were there 10 minutes before 10 and stood in line on the patio in front of The Alice Tully hall until the doors opened at 10:20. It was 92 degrees and the sun was beating down.
Mom: Oh my God I am burning up!
Me: Yep, that's why I told you yesterday the forecast was 90+ today.
Mom: I've got to take this jacket off, I am burning up.
Me: Go ahead then
Mom: But with the sun beating down like this if I take it off my neck will get sunburned.
Me: Yeah, that's why I wear sunscreen on my face and neck everyday. If you're afraid of getting burned just put the jacket over your shoulders so it covers your neck.
Later they opened the doors and we took a seat in the cool theater.
Mom: Good grief they need to turn the a/c up. I'm freezing.
Saturday: (On the plane at Laguardia prior to take off)
Mom: I am freezing! Air is blowing all over my head.
(I check the overhead vents and feel no air coming from it)
Me: There is no air coming from here so there is nothing I can do about it
Mom: Well it is blowing all over my face
Me: Do you want me to get you a blanket?
Mom: No! I want this to quit blowing on me.
Me: (Crickets) Well do you want change seats with you?
Mom: No, I felt the air on your seat and it is blowing on you too.
(In the Atlanta airport to catch a connecting flight)
Mom: Where are we going
Me: E 10
Mom: Gate 10 is way up there
Me: We are in terminal A right now, we need to go to E
Mom: But I see 10 way up there
Me Yes that is A 10
Mom: How do you know its A 10
Me: Because we flew into gate 28 at terminal A. Now we have to go to Terminal E. Just follow me and we will get to the train then ride to E.
(Meanwhile TheHub who was sitting at the back of the plane has caught up with us)
Mom: (To him) Where do we go now?
TheHub: E-10, Nan. Keep going this way and we'll take the train to E.
Mom: OK then.
Me: (Silently sings a song to self about being nothing but chopped liver)
Sunday: I had Mom's glasses in my backpack because her purse was too tiny to hold them. (Who but Mom travels with a bag too tiny to hold one's essentials?) so I had to run them down to her house today. She was upset that I would not stay and have a tea party with her. I got out of Dodge quickly before she could start telling me what she needed me to do for her. I was hoping I would have just one day this week that was Mom free. No dice I guess, but My Beloved Sister really did enjoy having 3 full days to herself. I told her it is my birthday gift to her!
Monday: I thought I was going to have day free from drama and angst. When I talked with Mom in the morning everything was going well and she was rested from the trip, but them at 4 in the afternoon I got a call from her wanting me to get another bid to have her tree taken down. We already have 3 bids, all three from people I personally know who have used those tree services. Obviously this is not enough, so I need to get cracking right this minute and have someone come today because she wants that tree down tomorrow. It's not going to happen like that and I have told her that repeatedly. Dad always took care of dealing with anything unpleasant or anything that required a tradesman of any sort so she has no idea that you are at their mercy when it comes to available times to have jobs done. We don't know if we should thank him for taming the beast or curse him for letting the monster grow. Either way we are paying dearly for it now!