I have a lot to write about and plan to get more out today but I’m also just thinking about mum as we approach her anniversary. Every day has meaning and she loved Halloween.
Two years ago today, we were in FL with Uncle J – the Uncle J and I love to argue politics because we are so opposite. I swear one day I’ll convince him that accelerated climate change is real and we need to act about it. Mum smiled and occasionally delved in but she was far less into these discussions than I. But I’ve spent years getting very right wing posts from sites that he read and I didn’t hold back from conversations. I always had my boss – even though he retired boss is still in his title – work husband would be another – friend a third – anyway he always debunked Uncle J’s e-mails with science and fact and Uncle J might go back a time or two and then he’d go silent. We still haven’t convinced him but I’ll get there.
Mum was really not feeling well. She wasn’t eating much at all and we were trying to decide if she would or would not go home to CA to die – I still hate typing that but it was our reality. She wasn’t sure if she could make it. We were still in decision making mode and in one of our late night talks I’d told her what her hubby had sent in I think the longest email I’ve ever seen from him. He very carefully told us that we must not do anything to pressure mum and then very carefully told us every reason that she might be more comfortable at home. In other word he wanted her back home with him. That helped decide her that she was going to try to make it home.
Mum always loved Halloween and Uncle Jon’s neighborhood did Halloween up in ways I’d never seen before. My mum was an amazing woman and 16 days before she died she was still doing laps around the neighborhood, limited only by her need to stay near a bathroom. We were cooking up plans to let her walk further by having one of us follow with the golf cart so we could rush her home if needed. Time never allowed us to need that. It was one of our good/bad days. Lots of good memories and lots of discomfort and pain on mum’s side and limitations that were just not mum. It was also our last Halloween and that makes it so much more.
I was amazed at the houses – one making itself into a zombie invaded house, complete with bodies and sheets making a contamination zone. In the evening, after a few trick or treaters made the trek up to the house – a whole 25 ft and disturbing their dogs. Max is a Doberman and is both fierce and sensitive. But once he was in the backyard we expected to continue answering the door – well it would be me doing the answering. Then Uncle Jon disappeared and mum and I went looking and found that in FL, at least in that neighborhood, people came out with chairs and brought the candy to the kids. That was new to me and to mum. I grew up in NM and we were used to frigid weather as often as not and we had to drive 5 miles to get to a neighborhood and then go shivering from house to house, usually with our costumes hiding costumes or hidden under costumes. No one brought the candy to us.
We didn’t sit out long. Mum only lasted a few minutes. I left not long after. I wanted to be with mum more than see the kids. We watched the movie Super 8 and then started the nightly routine of mum’s miserable nighttime hours. They were to be endured – nothing more and nothing less.
Last year I just turned off the lights. I’ll probably do the same this year. We don’t get many kids anyway. My adult experience was talking on the phone with mum about how many kids she was getting…