Monday, May 15, 2006
The top picture is my mother when she lived in Casper, Wyoming. Annie, my baby sister, took her there when Mom decided to get sober, oh, back in 1985? Annie has always been closest to Mom, she was Mom's special baby, although Mom didn't care for her any better than she did anyone else.
When we were put into foster care, Annie was only 10 and she lost her bearings to a large degree. The people were abusive (I still intend to find them and kill their cat slowly and leave its dead body and a tape of the torture on their doorstep with a note telling them they are next so they can live the rest of their lives in fear) and poor little Annie just flailed. We stayed close, though, although we're not speaking at the moment.
She took good care of Mom, though. Mom drove her nearly crazy with her antics and constant demands for attention and people would call Annie telling her that they'd very nearly ran over her mother when she walked in front of her car. Annie's the one who got called when Mom got 86'd from the hospital for being a nuisance, she thought she had every right to go into the baby nursery and the pharmacy.
Annie helped Mom get all set up in Casper and she had a nice apartment, but she spent most of her days wandering the streets. The people of Casper and Annie's friends and family all watched out for this crazy little old lady and mostly Annie laughed at her antics. She didn't get into garbage cans or stuff like that, but she did do some crazy things. Annie tried to put her in a care center once, realizing Mom was totally losing it, but some lawyer got her out and she went on another few years until she was broken and near death and Annie called me and I flew up and we put her in a home. It was harder on Annie than on me. She stayed there for a year until they threw her out because she was beating people up.
She's 4'9" 90 lbs., but she's an onery gut when life isn't going properly for her. Bill and I flew her down here and put her in the rest home in Parowan, where her grandmother had lived until her death.
Mom's happy there, they let her come and go, she wanders and visits everyone. She's sweet and loves everyone. I had her ears pierced and bought her a pearl (not real) necklace to wear and make her wear cute clothes. I do her makeup and paint her nails hot pink. Sometimes she knows who I am, sometimes not.
When we were little girls, we called her Mama. Usually when I was crying as she left me yet again with somebody, whoever it was that time. She couldn't cook to save her life, she didn't have any maternal skills, but she's all I have to work with, so it's all good.
I am like her mother now, I roll up her boob and stick it in the bra. Sometimes if falls back out, I roll it up again. I guess that's what the nurses do when I'm not there, which is most of the time.
This isn't big tribute to motherhood. It's just a small exploration of my weird mother. I'm grateful for this quiet time when I can care for her in a small way and accept the love she has to give, with no resentment. Nothing profound. Just life.