I nearly lost it on Sunday. Nearly lost what remaining droplets of patience I had. Mom was especially hyper the other day, and, of course, incredibly eager to talk to her boyfriend: The Priest…………. over and over and over again about the same topic: coming over to dinner. My husband wants you to eat the fruit with us. Tonight! You come tonight!!!
Before Mass. As he’s approaching the alter. During Communion. As he’s exiting the alter. Outside.
Damn you short term memory!
However, what caused me to very nearly step off the ledge was the fact that the church decided to celebrate the priest’s 15 years commitment to the most holy universal church with carrot cake. That’s nice. What a surprise! And what a surprise when a gaggle of little children ran up to the front of the church to hug him.
In theory, this would be positively adorable. In theory. The problem is, mom loves the little ones and she loves nothing more than to tell them that she loves them. Thing is, instead of saying, “I luf you,” she grabs their little—still growing and therefore delicate—hands and yells, “I LUF YOU VERY MUCH. I LUF YOU”.
This can be scary if you’re only 3 or 4 or 5 years old. This is scary when you’re 33………….. mostly because I think of the freaked out parent who is going to one day come over and say something to her and to me about grabbing their little, still developing child (she has a firm grasp)—thankfully, the Hispanic community is too polite to say anything overtly rude. Mostly, they just stare and the younger ones just laugh. UGH!
So I was getting irritated. And irritation, when it comes to my beloved mother, leads to me utilize reason as a means to communicate with her. I was going all out LOGIC with her. I know, absolutely stupid and a complete emotional drain, which then frustrates me, angers me and makes me want to cry. Thing is, I can’t help it. I want her to understand that there are consequences to her actions.
Explain to her the ramifications of her actions.
Ask her to NOT grab those sweet, FRAGILE, little hands, which could break if you squeeze too hard!
PLUS, everyone STARES AT ME MOM! AT ME. LIKE I’M THE MEAN DAUGHTER!
This typically results in her a) laughing at me or b) telling me that no, they like it and she’s going to do it anyway, so fuck off (added for effect, it’s not in her limited vocabulary. She would probably say, FRUIT OFF).
After a few lame attempts to restrain her. Several LONG STARES from members of the church, we left and headed to Target to decompress.
Not before rewarding her bad behavior with nachos…………… 4 months ago, she used to love the fake cheese. Last Sunday she hated it. Weird.
Target. Stay on Target.
I love you Target.
She knows we go to Target for several reasons: to walk around/to spit on the floor/to spend some quality time together/to give dad some extra alone time.
The one thing I will say is that my patience meter typically refills after a few moments………………………….. or once I walk through the hallowed doors of Target.
Target is also one of those places where we’ve had some sweet, tender moments (believe it or not………. you buy toilet paper there; I bond with mom) and last Sunday was one of them.
I often don’t get “mom” moments. So when I do, I find them to be incredibly tender and sweet—it’s not typical, and maybe more mother/daughter in the sense that I’m the mother and she’s the little daughter offering fashion advice………………………… I was trying on a dress and she was actually doing a very good job of helping me decide whether to buy it. I tried on like 3 different garments and she was standing there telling me in her own way that it doesn’t look right or that it’s a good fit. She was very helpful and just a great shopping companion that day.
Funny thing is, my mom used to be a shopaholic. The woman LOVED to shop. She would buy clothes just because they were on sale! Would she wear them. No. But she bought them, because by God, it was on SALE! She still has two closets dedicated to her clothes……………… but dementia has taken away that joy. She hates trying on clothes and she only wears a few outfits, mostly she likes to wear this one particular Kelly Green dress that she bought for my cousin Lisa’s wedding in 1996.
It’s her favorite dress. Like in the universe.