Missing Mom

Today would have been my Mom’s 74th birthday. Man, she loved her birthdays. I think maybe I should drive her grand kids over to Terre Haute and eat at some crappy chain restaurant in her honor.
 
Maybe not.
 
I can’t decide if losing your mom gets easier with time or not.
 
One benefit of time passing is that I don’t forget it as often. I can’t tell you how many times those first few months I would hear something and think, “I should call Mom and tell her… oh, right. She’s dead. I’ll never call and talk to her again. Gosh, I sure do love spontaneously crying in the canned vegetable aisle at the supermarket.”
 
Brains are cruel little bastards. The scientist in me knows those blips are just part of me processing the loss. She’s on my mind, I miss her, but I’m also trying to wall off the pain. So part of my brain would remember what the rest of my brain was trying to forget.
 
At least I’m not torturing myself like that. Well, not as often.
 
I know people like to say Time Heals All Wounds, but, well… not so much. Sure, the heat and fire of the emotions have tapered off. But now the pain is just deeper, more calm. It’s not an enemy now as much as a grouchy friend that’s here to stay, so no use fighting about it.
 
The worst of all of this is, the more I accept that she’s gone forever, the clearer I see my own grave.
 
Mortality is a bitch, my friends. No one gets out of this alive.
 
I’ve said a few times over my life that it would be better to not think so much, to not harness myself with the weight of the world as much as I do. Ignorance is bliss, right? These days I think I’d really enjoy a moment or two to feel that naive immortality I felt when I was 18 and invincible.
 
I read in a book this morning (The Moon is a Harsh Mistress) that the definition of an adult is someone who has accepted their own mortality. I don’t know about that as a definition. I just know that these days it feels like I know as many dead people as living people, and the ratio keeps getting worse.
 
Sigh.
 
My friends, please tell your people you love them, often and with feeling. Always believe in yourself, especially when you have no idea what you’re doing. Go out there and attack life like you mean it. Be kind to each other.
 
Do me a favor today, would ya? Call your mom. Because you can. Or, better yet, give her a hug, then give her another one for me.
 
Thanks.
 
Troy
 
Sep 10, 2018
 
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Getting Started

Little Miss Thing, age 8: “You started it. You always start it!”

Danger Monkey, age 11: “No I don’t!”

Me: “OK, kids, cut it out. The only thing worse than arguing is arguing about arguing. Trust me, you have better things to do with your time.”

(long pause)

DM: “But now you are arguing about arguing about arguing.”

Me: …

LMT: “I told you he always starts it.”

The Clean Version

Danger Monkey, age 11, buckling seat belt: “Do we have to take your car?”

Me: “What’s wrong with my car?”

DM: “It’s just really messy back here.”

Me: “And why is that?”

DM: “Well, you’re not as strict as Mom on leaving things in the car, so really it’s your fault.”

(long pause)

Me: “Soooo… I haven’t even put the car into gear yet… and you’re complaining that your area is messy… because I don’t make you clean up your mess.”

DM: “Yes, exactly.”

(long pause)

Me: “Alright, then unbuckle your seat belt.”

DM: “Yes! We’re taking Mom’s car!”

Me: “Uh… no. You’re cleaning up your mess.”

DM: “Aw, man.”

Me: “How did you think this was going to end any other way?”