Monday, January 11, 2016

Oh, Michael

It's been near a year since my mother died, a death she wanted the moment her Alzheimer's had kicked in and that a blood infection finally achieved three years later.

I was with her for her final days and at several points it was just me and her in the room. She couldn't speak because of a recent mini-stroke. Though she'd lost all short term memory in a moment she could grasp a concept and hold it for a few fleeting seconds. So I told her things about my brothers and myself, hoping she'd find joy or interest in that few seconds after I spoke before she forgot it. Anything to take her mind off the pain of her failing body.

I told her some story where I'd done something disappointing. Her expression changed to instant disapproval and I could hear in my mind what she would have said—"Oh, Michael."

I remembered that the other day and I started laughing.

"Oh, Michael."

Gold.

I have her memorial service sheet pinned up in the shed. Now and then I look at it and say "you'd have been proud of me, Mum."

Proud, but likely still a little disappointed.

"Oh, Michael."

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