Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Mothers, Fake Dates, and the Beach

This weekend I went to the beach for a wedding. My friend Sigmund went as my fake date. It was also my first wedding in which my father wasn't my date (or I went alone), so that was a pleasant change. We enjoyed the margarita and taco bar, as well as the funny couples we were seated with. Another couple, Carl and Stanley, came along for the road trip as well.

We began by having dinner at this honky tonk place in the middle of nowhere. I forgot how many country songs I know, and I think I scared my travel companions with this knowledge. In honor of this dinner, "cowboy up" was the term for the weekend. We also stopped for gas about a block from the honky tonk and it was like entering the Grindhouse double feature. Everyone in the station either looked they were were about to die (like the female college students who loudly talked about how they were lost and needed to call their moms and let them know they are not dead- this wasn't foreshadowing at all) or wanted to kill others (like the stupid girls).

Saturday after the wedding Sig and I met up with Carl and Stanley and wandered around town. At dinner I was more in love with the Bollywood films being shown than the company or the food. They were great films of love and loss and of course dancing.

Sunday started out well. We had a nice breakfast at the local IHOP (umm pancakes) then went shopping. Then my mother called.

She has begun hallucinating again and forgot I was not in town. Right there in the middle of a busy sidewalk I stopped and listened as my mother began talking about all the people following her, watching her, and destroying her house. I was near a restaurant where families were celebrating Mother's Day, and it finally hit me that this was it. For the rest of her life this would be the down and the ups would never get as up as they once were. I have thought about it before but now I realize one day she will need me to see to her care 24/7. Sigh.

I looked over at my friends who were pretending not to watch me try not to fall apart, and I was glad to have such good company. Even speaking to my therapist about it yesterday didn't quite take the sadness away. Mother's day has never been a holiday I enjoyed with my mother anyways (reasons why best saved for a later post), but it hit me that one day potentially every holiday could sound like this. Am I ready to be her caretaker full time? No, not even close to ready. I am not even ready to be a real grown up yet, much less be in charge of her. Is anyone ever ready to parent their parent?

And so you don't think my Sunday was completely a downer I will end by telling you how I began to conquer not one, but two fears. As I drove my travel weary friends home I needed to use the restroom. I had my fill of scary gas station bathrooms (where you know you'll get the monkey pox if your butt touches the seat) and asked Sig if I could use his. He looked a little alarmed but agreed. He tried to tell me it was a little dirty, but not monkey pox dirty. What he didn't tell me was that the last time he entered that room in his house was the first day he moved in. There were spider webs everywhere including the toilet bowl, and as I tried to sweep them off the place I would soon be sitting he stood outside the door telling me this was better than the upstairs one. I have a hard time using the restroom while other people are around, and well spiders scare the crap out of me. But I did what I needed to. And hopefully received no spider bite in the ass.

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