Home » A Wasted Life » Mothers’ Day, A Phone Call, Birthdays And A New Baby

Mothers’ Day, A Phone Call, Birthdays And A New Baby

I had tried to get J*** to go to a counselor for years and then one day he called to tell me that he had actually gone to see a psychiatrist but that he was NOT going to be forthcoming with any information.  I wasn’t surprised.  He had never been forthcoming about anything although he had always insisted on knowing everything when I was going to counseling.
He said he told the psychiatrist “I absolutely cannot hurt this woman any more than I already have.”  I thought, “after everything he has said and done, he’s now expressing concern about hurting me?”
I was suspicious because he was becoming so attentive.  He would call me and talk about nothing, which was nothing new but the phone calls were more frequent than they had been in the past.
I would be out mowing my lawn and trimming hedges and he would start texting me.  I had to stop and take off my garden gloves to answer him every time.  I didn’t hide my irritation and voiced it to N****.  Why is he suddenly taking the time to communicate with me?
I had been thinking about mama.  Finding out why she hated me had offered a sort of comfort or closure.  I decided that I was going to call R***.  I called J*** and asked for her telephone number.  He was confrontational at first and wanted to know why I wanted it.  I told him that I was going to call her and ask her why she treated me the way she did.  He gave me the number and then asked me to let him know how it went.
I waited until that night to call her.  R*** had claimed to be going deaf for years and I was concerned that she wouldn’t be able to hear me.  It was funny, though.  The last time I was in her house (when we had gone up for the basketball game), she didn’t have any problem at all hearing me.  I always thought it was a ploy to garner attention.  More than likely, she chose to have selective hearing.
I called and came right out and asked her why she treated me the way she treated me.  She pleaded ignorance.  She said “why P**, I have always loved you and I remember us having so much fun together.”  She wanted to know what made me think that she had mistreated me.  Unbelievable.  I brought up several instances, such as the fit she had when I didn’t have any macaroni.  She said “oh, I was just kidding and everybody knew I was just kidding.”  I wasn’t going to get anywhere with her and I knew it was a waste of time.  After all, she had once said, “I don’t have any bad memories.”  If I had spent the majority of my life in a drunken stupor, I wouldn’t have any bad memories either.
Then, she decided to tell me to offer my worries to God.  She said that she had prayed and God had helped her to quit drinking.  It was only the second time she had ever admitted that she even drank.  The last time I saw her, she was advising me “never to turn to alcohol.”  I never had, so why would she think I would then and was she really the person to offer me advice on drinking?  And, why didn’t God help her to stop drinking thirty years earlier?  If she had indeed stopped drinking, I suspect it’s because she no longer had her enabler to make sure she had plenty of Vodka and she no longer had somebody who was going to find her on the floor and call 911.  Those two reasons themselves are a pretty good deterrent to not drink anymore.  Good for her.  She was on the road to recovery and I was still damaged from enduring thirty years of her drunken abuse.
She had told me the last time I saw her, that the first time she took a drink was because somebody hurt her feelings.  The second time was because somebody “stole” her parking place.  After that, she started “rewarding” herself with a drink after she cleaned the house.  She ultimately started “rewarding” herself non-stop from morning until night.
I rebuffed the idea that I needed God to help me.  I asked her why she never treated her other daughters-in-law the way she treated me.  She finally said “I guess it was the drink.”
She said she wanted me to know that J*** “loved me dearly.”  That would be quite comical in the months to come.
Since I was on a roll, I decided to ask J*** once again, why he betrayed me.  He raised his voice and said “I don’t know and you keep asking me questions that I don’t have an answer for.”
Mothers’ Day was near and I was looking forward to spending time with my children.  K**** and B***** always gave me wonderful, meaningful gifts and it was always coupled with lunch or dinner.  N****, bless her heart, was bad to give me an empty frame with the promise of a picture.  I have several still empty frames with her little sticky notes attached to the glass.  I didn’t mind because I knew that her intentions were sincere.  My son would always give me a card and flowers.  I still have all the cards my children gave me and one “card” I still have from my son, makes me smile and sort of giggle.  It’s just a piece of pink construction paper.  He didn’t have time to write or draw anything on it, so he just gave me the paper.
I didn’t get flowers or a card from J***.  I imagine R*** and possibly somebody else did, though.
It was June and time for birthdays and a new grandchild.  The month of June was full of celebratory dates.  My birthday was first, then J***s’, then E*s’ and our granddaughter had been born.  B***** had given her my maiden name as her middle name and I was honored.  I made sure to tell her how much it meant to me.  She had been named after my daddy but he didn’t even remember.  Even when I reminded him, it took a few seconds for it to sink in because it really didn’t mean anything to him.
P**** and her boyfriend had come down to see the new baby and like J***, they were staying with me.  I hadn’t been feeling good for some time and I didn’t know why.  I was having one of my lovely Herpes attacks but I always did anytime I was going to see J***.  Most of the time it just made it almost impossible to sit down or walk sometimes but this time it was vicious.  I also thought I had a UTI but the symptoms only lasted a few hours.  I had a UTI before and they weren’t fun.  I had told B***** and she said she would bring me some Valtrex.
K**** and E* were having our birthday bash at her house and wanted me to make my famous macaroni and cheese.  She knew I hadn’t been feeling good and called to tell me that if I didn’t feel like making it, I didn’t have to.  I could hear E* in the background say “fuck that!”  Everybody liked my macaroni and cheese.  I got it made and we went over for the party.  I spent the whole time on her sofa.  I just didn’t feel like doing anything.  I didn’t eat much and I couldn’t socialize.
We got back to my house and I was once again, on the sofa.  I got up and made myself some hot tea because I was freezing.  I was all wrapped up in quilts.  Now, it was June and hotter than blue blazes and I was freezing.
The dishes were mounting up and so was the laundry.
P**** and B**** finally decided to wash my dishes for me and P**** did my laundry.  It was obvious that J*** wasn’t going to do anything except check his phone.
I noticed that he seemed to be absolutely unconcerned about the way I was feeling and spent most of the time outside……texting on his phone.
If he did pay any attention to me, it was to just put another quilt on me and walk back outside.  His phone had always had alerts on it and any other time, he would just sit there and let that alert just blast away.  Now, he was whipping that phone out before alert ended.
J*** had mentioned that he was having a big meeting with the Vice President of the newspaper when he got back. J*** said the Vice President was the one who had called him “an intellectual terrorist” and prefaced every meeting with “we all need to recognize that J*** H*** is the smartest person in the room.”
He was leaving the next day and so were P**** and B****.  I asked J*** if I asked him to stay, would he and he said “probably.”  So, I said “will you stay?”  He said “nope.  Gotta get back.”
K**** came over to say goodbye to everybody and came in the living room to see me.  She looked at me and said “mom, you are doing exactly what you KNOW you aren’t supposed to be doing!”  She was right….and I was a “fucking EMT.”  I knew that with a fever, you didn’t cover up.  She had brought a thermometer with her and took my temperature.  It was 101.
She went outside and told J*** that I needed to go to the hospital and if he didn’t take me, she would.  They both took me and I was almost septic.  They ran an EKG and aside from  a few bunny ears, my heart was okay.  I was instructed to follow-up immediately with my doctor, which I did later.  She said “you came this close to becoming completely septic.”
Did J*** stay?  No, he didn’t.

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