Saturday, December 16, 2006

At Least I'm Not Completely Crazy...

Though DH might disagree at times.

Y'know how sometimes you just need a reality check? Someone to hold the mirror up and show you whether your lipstick's on straight or whether you have Revlon schmeared all the way up to your eyebrows? Well, today my cousin G held up the mirror, and though I'm not all together sure I'm happy about it, at least I know my lipstick's on straight.

Today was my uncle's interment. The poor man died a week ago this past Thursday; his wake was last Saturday and Sunday; his funeral was Monday. BUT...his mausoleum was brand-spankin' new, and the doors weren't even open until Friday. Four days after his funeral. So, he's just been hanging around, waiting on line to be buried. Geez. At least he got the pick of all the spots in the place.

So, today we drove a long way to say goodbye to Baby M's Kindermusik teacher, who was leaving the world of baby play to pursue her career as an opera singer, then drove an even longer way and arrived in the middle of the ceremonial color guard handing the flag over to my aunt -- my uncle was a war veteran -- and then drove a much shorter way to my aunt's house where, in true Italian-American fashion, we comforted ourselves with food.

Midway between soothing a fussy, teething baby (his) and placating a hyper, overstimulated toddler (mine), Cousin G and I talked about my mom. And after I told him about the things that have happened in the past year that upset me so, and after I told him how my mom reacted when I told her, calmly and without hysterics, that I was upset and why, his response, and I quote, was, "Oh, shit."

Lipstick? Check.

I'm trying to just let this go. We don't talk in my family; we repress our emotions. If an unpleasant feeling arises, we ignore it until it goes away or gives us an ulcer. While I've managed to overcome this tendency in many other of my life's relationships, I don't think I'll ever get past this with my mom, primarily because no matter how much I open up with her, she would rather stick her fingers in her ears and hum until I give up and go away.

Cousin G mentioned something very interesting today during our talk. He said that when my aunt -- my mom's only living sister and the sibling she's been closest to throughout my living memory -- phoned my mother to tell her that the interment would be on Saturday, my mom's response was, "I won't be coming. I'm baking." That's right, ladies and gentlemen: my mother had a date with her Christmas cookies and she wasn't about to be deterred by the pesky death of her sister's husband. What pod-person has arrived from outer space and replaced my mother with this?

Mom eventually came to the interment. She came to my aunt's house afterwards and ate cold-cut sandwiches and apple crisp and left without saying much to me. I don't expect she'll call, but maybe she'll surprise me. Stranger things have happened at Christmas, I suppose.

But I wouldn't bet the stable on it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Without being presumptious, I think I know how you feel... in my family silence is how we deal with conflict. Somehow, if you give someone silent treatment your issues will disappear.

I can't do much for you but send both you and your Mom metta (loving kindness), in hopes that you will both be able to talke about whatever is troubling you.