Wednesday, February 17, 2016

I Remember Mama

I Remember Mama
I Remember Mama (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
My mother did not teach me how to be old, or even get old. She didn't live long enough. She died when she was 38. I had my last child when I was 38. Mama taught me how to be alive and not sacrifice the joy when things were tough. After she began to feel the effects of disease, she made herself a long robe from a very flowing fabric, I guess it was jersey, and she called it her lounging robe for entertaining friends in the afternoon. It was a soft fuchsia, and I considered it very romantic and sophisticated. Funny I don't remember her wearing it much after she went to the trouble to make it, of course she didn't entertain friends much then either.

I remember her sister Gertrude came to visit and she made her put on makeup and talk about bridge. She thought talking about the illness was depressing everybody. Mama said the makeup was for everybody else, but she did love bridge. She didn't feel well enough to play bridge anymore, so she would deal the cards for four hands and then play them all. I never learned the game much, but I thought it was the most elegant way to waste an afternoon. 

I played solitaire, and she did too sometimes. It made me feel very grown up to play with her. I still play, on the computer. It's not as much fun as it was when I held the cards in my hand and felt their cool sophistication, but it will waste an afternoon. 

I thought my mother was very wise and knowledgeable. I wish I'd listened better or she had lived longer. There are many things I'd still like to ask her about how to be an adult and make things work.

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