Postcards of Grief

Mourning is a process.

Comments on breast cancer by proxy, written by a woman coping with the loss of her mother.

Saturday, January 10, 2004

Posh spice

We had a social evening. I believe my dismay was masked sufficiently. I arrived (an hour and a half late) there to Sonya and Mom chatting on the couch. Sonya had brought futtush for a late lunch, and all four of us enjoyed it. Hers really is better than any I’ve had. She says the trick is the sumac, for which she has to travel halfway across the state.

Later on, Sonya’s daughter, Tara, came over, and the two made dinner for the five of us. I recommended a movie, and we ate, chatted, and viewed. Bend It Like Beckham went over well. Mom was ready for bed before the movie was over, but every time Sonya or Tara asked how she was, she smiled and chirped and fussed over someone else. She can’t stand to be tired or weak in front of them, and that’s more out of her nurturing hostess desires than her pride. After they left, she stayed up another twenty minutes. We snuggled on the couch, and I rubbed her feet.

Her days are divided by her physical state and regular tasks. Morning comes when morning comes—there’s never any rush or time constraint. After morning comes pills, which can last an hour if conversation is involved. Pills go down slowly, and breakfast may follow if her stomach isn’t queasy. If she has plans for the day, her bath is next, and after the bath—with no exceptions—she is dressed in “everyday cashmere.” (This is how I know my mother and I belong to two different social classes.) Her plans may be delayed for a nap and lunch or vice versa. Big plans are almost always followed by a nap. Dinner rolls around, then TV, then bed.

Tomorrow, sometime after pills, we will try yoga.


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