Sunday, May 10, 2009

too many memories

A few years ago I got rid of most all my plants. My deck used to look like the hanging gardens of Babylon in the summer but in the winter I had to find places inside the house. Then I had to water every single one of them. So, I started giving them away. Got down to maybe five and this winter I managed to kill a few more. But lately I’ve been collecting flowering plants much to my poor husbands chagrin. Something to bring some color back. Mary loved flowers. She picked out the house they bought because there were fruit trees, a garden already plowed and ready to plant, grape vines, blackberry bushes (yes, a weed, but delicious) and what seemed like thousands of bulbs flowering everywhere. So, I buy flowers. Now I’ll have to plant the bulbs somewhere because many have finished flowering. They have reached the end of their time too.

I have one plant I’ve managed to keep alive for almost 10 years. The kids gave it to me for Mother’s Day when I was just starting to collect plants. It has split many times but I seem to only have the same size plant as when I started. Mary has hanging plants around her house. One is magnificent, hanging tendrils down over 8 feet. Carol keeps it watered. But for what? I told her to take it and put it on her back porch but she can’t.

Except for these flowers, I haven’t managed to really do anything constructive. Yes, I work a few hours each day or at least I sit at my desk. But something about Mary always seems to come up and I don’t get much done. My walls are still half painted. Thank goodness for auto pay banking or my bills would be past due. My yard needs weeding. I bought a sprayer last weekend and it’s sitting in the box in the garage. I don’t cook much unless there’s nothing for Danny to eat that’s low sodium.

I hate going downstairs to the pool room. Mary’s room is down there but that’s not the problem. She hasn’t really lived in it for almost 6 years. It’s everything else. My sewing table has all the stuff for making her purses. The other table has all the pictures of everyone I was scanning and printing for Christmas. All the “crafts” I was working on she was helping me with. EVERYTHING down there is almost like walking into her house. All the furniture she was going to put into the back of Tony’s truck is sitting there ready to go. Her cups and sauces she was collecting, hanging on the wall. She used to let Cindy drink tea from them. Some of her clothes hang in the closet, her paints and brushes packed away in boxes for the ride to Hayesville.

I have to clear out a fairly large space down there for all her things we will bring back from the house. Her things…, her essence, her being, her life. All packed up and tied with ribbons! Dishes, cook books, tea pots, the clock I made her and the one Tom made. And, most of all the material she has been gathering for her purses. The yarn she has been buying to make hats and gloves and scarves. She crocheted a coat for Taco and a backpack for Choda to carry his food on their hikes. All the organic foods they bought and ate. She started me buying cage free eggs last year. The backpack she bought just 2 days before the accident is sitting on the living room sofa up there. Who will use it now?

I now know several people who have lost children. Like attracts like? They all have kept either the child’s room as it was or created a room just for the memories. I don’t know what to do. I can’t keep everything as it is now because nothing is as it was. I have to clear out her house sometime soon. I have to put everything someplace. No, not a storage place.

The day she died the store called her phone to say her wedding dress had arrived. I left it there for a long time. Michele picked it up for me because they wouldn’t take it back. It’s sitting at her house. I can’t even think about it without falling to my knees. The only pictures I have of her wearing it are ones I took with my phone. They aren’t very good. I haven’t looked at them. We were waiting till the dress came to take better pictures. Now there’s nothing to plan, nothing to get excited about.

I took her rings back to the jeweler to get them joined. Her wedding bank was custom made for the heirloom ring. So now they will always be together. I couldn’t even talk to the jeweler. I just showed him her pictures as tears ran down my cheeks. He was very kind and remembered our name. And I was quiet.

So, tomorrow is Mother’s Day. I have almost every card for every occasion my kids have ever given me. As I was rummaging in my jewelry box I found a hand made tiny envelop with a little letter inside. It was from Mary when she was in middle school. It said, Happy Mother’s Day. She is everywhere in our house. There is never a moments rest from her memory. I see her talking to me but I can’t hear her words. So, today (four weeks, four days, and twenty two hours later) is no better than that day. Just a little quieter.

I hate him. Right now I don’t think I could be in the same room with him We’ll see when August 17th comes.

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