Thursday, February 4, 2010

Don't read this, I'm sad today.

This day the only interesting item to arrive in the Pond mailbox was the newest Land's End catalog. Once I started the dinner, I sat down in a cozy chair next to the fireplace in the Keeping Room to look at this version of a "wish book". To tell you the the truth, the gloomy skies with a mix of snow and rain began to be banished by the catalog photography and the brightly colored Spring and Summer wardrobe offerings. This is residual magic from my childhood. When a "wish book" arrived siblings and I would cozy together on the sofa to look closely and pick our favorite thing on each page. This too is a much treasured lesson from our mother. To savor, to envision, to choose, to share, to dream together. Lessons of family to last a lifetime.

Then on page 87 I unexpectedly got stabbed in the heart.

On that page, Land's End is offering carnation pink, all terrain, Mary Janes.
"My mother would love these shoes"! I think with excitement.
Then I remembered my mother no longer needs shoes.

Others who have lost, or are losing , loves know it is the little things which gut you the worst.

The big things, we brace for. For the big things we pray for Strength. Pray for Compassion. Pray for Acceptance. Pray for what we are feeling to NOT be our primary memory years from now. I
especially pray to not let this relentless trip toward death overshadow the experiences from a life lived.

In the case of my mother, she reads her daily paper, watches the news, observes the birds at the feeders, watches eagerly for buds to awaken in the view from her window. The view from her hospital bed. The view outside the misery. My mother loves on her pup, talks to her children and soldiers on as best she can. Cruel arthritis has stolen from her the pleasure of going out to garden, walking her own pup, getting herself dressed, combing her own hair or wearing cute little pink shoes. As immobility increases, circulation decreases and edema congregates. In her ankles, in those tiny little Aunt Pittypat feet, and now climbing upward. There are these huge foam booties velcroed to my Mother's feet. To prevent pressure points. Way bigger than Minnie Mouse shoes. I hate them. Actually, I hate there is a need for them. I guess I am , in fact, grateful they are available to minimize the suffering, or the complications.

Still, at some horrid place in my core, I want to shred them with a machete, or a buggy whip or a blender. I crave the satisfaction of being able to eradicate objects I have come to loathe. As if by attacking the velcro booties I could attack the arthritis which is stealing my mother. I cannot. But I yearn to vanquish that thieving, murderous, relentless horror that is end stage arthritis. I crave the release from an overwhelming anger I am forced to control. It is not to be. I cannot vanquish this foe with weapons or prayers. I must endure. I must conceal this huge wrath and be cheerful, positive, reinforcing, normal. For my mother. Who is suffering quite enough without feeling the angst of her children.

This issue of Land's End,
does not have any sleepwear.
It doesn't really matter.
What I wish for,
with all my heart,
is never
going to be delivered
to my mailbox
in a "wish book".


Unknown said...


fishy said...

Thanks much honey. Do call her often Sweetheart, she loves to hear your cheerful voice. As do I.

moi said...

Aw, hon, I'm sorry. It's terrible to be so powerless over the ravages of disease. But the love you have for your mom must be a wonderful tonic for her.

When you get a chance, I've declared a Throw Down winner; drop on by.

Jenny said...

Oh, Fishy, this just made me cry. You are so right when you say it's the little things we're not prepared for. And it truly can be something as simple as the arrival of a catalog in the mail. I'm trying so hard right now to not make my Father's descent about me, but it's hard when dealing with a parent to know where they end and we begin. But even last night when I came home (he's with my brother) I picked up his slipper and started to cry.

To watch them disapear in front of our eyes is gut wrenching, and I'm working hard to find some beauty in the unknown I've recently entered. My Mother died suddenly and we were spared what you're going through right now.

These moments are hard, but they have a purpose, or at least that's what I've been telling myself.

XOXO to you. You are not alone.

Pam said...

It sounds like you are definitely going through a tough time. Lots of love to your mom, a person of grace and beauty in small things like wish books. That is what we always called them too. So Ms. Designer Lady .... What can you do to perk up those ugly boots she has to wear? Pedicure? Little pink appliques you can sew on them? Treasure your moments. I'm a total orphan and wish I was in your boots.

Kymical Reactions said...

((hug)) Fishy, I'm going to pray for you (and your mother) tonight. Peace be to you.

boneman said...

well, I know some might say I'm contrary...maybe yes, maybe not so much.
Seems you said it first off,
"Mom would love these shoes"
Reckon i thought things similar for the last three months of Ma's life, but, she was in a coma (in and out of just a blank face to a face covered in fear)

Thing is, go ahead and remember the good about her.
What she loved. What would make her laugh.
I reckon it was Mayden who used the words to my head when she said, "celebrate the life of the person"
And, that she's alive is all the more reason, I would guess.

Sorry, though for your heart pains.
As for that when like hands get gripped by some inside muscle and tightens up so bad it hurts?
That would be what I get, sometimes.
I fight it as best as possible.
Massage is helpful.
Anyway, what's to lose for rubbing your mom's feet, eh?

Good luck with it all.

Aunty Belle said...

Sniff...heah's a cyber-squeeze. Hug yore Mama fer me.

so sorry Fishy--an' yet, how weird! I mean--readin' your Paris fer Lunch post--wait to til ya heah this.

Ya know our Granny is failin' too? I'se posted now an' then on the troubles--she has congestive heart failure, an now growing kidney failure. So it's been a sad few months watchin' her hauled to an fro from hospital to rehab, an' back to the hospital...long long months of trouble, an' now she has Hospice. Out time together is precious.

T'other morn' she called a little weepy--I told her I'd be right on over.I took along a big ole picture cook book of France--an' I said, "Mama, let's git outa heah...I'se takin' ya to France today!"

At first she jes' played along--but then, oh mercy, Granny got into it. We spent an hour an' 20 minutes lookin' in the France "Wishbook."

Doan be too sad, chile'. Yore Mama wants to see yore smile--see yore "fizz!" I think Pam has it right--at least we still has parents. Treasure the days of life an save the grief fer later.

Prayers for yore mama--an' you too.

Joanna Cake said...

I used to do that with my sister and our best friend. Poring over the pages and choosing the items that would adorn our homes in the future.

The Lands End catalogue also comes through my door each month.

Big hugs and the strength to get through such a horrid time go out to you x

Dani said...

I'm so sorry you're hurting Fishy. ((HUGS))Sending warm loving thoughts your way.