Tuesday, August 28, 2012

My Mother, today (with Jacob)

Mom & Jake
I know the other day I promised a short post and then rambled on and on. But this time I really mean it!

Neither wordless nor quite yet Wednesday, though, so think of it as Pithy Tuesday or some such. (Nods to Elissa Freeman, she knows why.)

Today Jake and I went out to see my mother, while my upstairs neighbors rescued Ethan from a day of video-game-and-TV-watching boredom.

He has such a terror of spending a day alone (not ALONE alone, mind you, but alone as in NOT played with, being pretty much ignored by busy working parents) and is rather vocal in his displeasure with such arrangements. Especially when they involve proximity to his autistic twin brother.

Ethan does not believe me that no one has ever died of such a thing as boredom, and claims he will be the first. I have tried the "bored children get chores" gambit, but there is no yard work here in our tiny urban apartment, and all other housekeeping tasks would require MORE of my time and energy to teach and supervise him in than to do them myself.

So he empties the dishwasher and then it's pretty much back to entertaining himself with expensive electronics. (The horror, the horror...)

But today, my neighbor (whose praises I cannot sing enough) knowing all too well herself the eldercare-and-kids sandwich squash, took Ethan on for the afternoon.

Leaving Jake free to train out to Long Island with me, to spend some quality time with my mother. (Taking the train because the morning had been spent bringing the sadly falling apart old car to our lovely mechanic* to get a new tire, among other things.)

And we did. just. that.

And I didn't cry because Jake was there and I didn't want to scare him, but I held my mother while she cried about how reduced and sad her life is now, about how much she misses my father. Each and every day.

"He was my best friend," she tells me yet again, tears welling up in the good eye, and the bad.

A pair, they were. Bonded in love and friendship. Fifty one years.

I hated to leave her, when it came certainly time to say goodbye. "This is what I look forward to now," she said, apologetically, gesturing to the bingo game they were starting to set up in the dining room.

"Your mother is a good player, she wins!" piped up one of the other residents, declaring my mother a youngster, she a sprightly 96.

Yes she is.

Yes she does.

90 on Sunday.

We'll be back.

*If you're a New Yorker with a car, I love, and am happy to recommend our mechanic. Talk to Ralphie of NY Prestige Auto Repair, and tell him Varda with the ancient green Camry sent you. He'll treat you right. (No guarantees, of course, but that been my experience so far.)

Just Write
I am linking this up with my friend Heather's Just Write


  1. I'm glad she is at least looking as well as she is, even though she is feeling the sadness of missing your dad.


  2. I love the tag "My mother is a tough old bird."

    My grandmother is 97 and fits that description. It makes me smile.


I am so sorry to have to turn word verification back on, but the spam-bots have found me - yikes!