Tuesday, June 26, 2007

It's Truth and it's not fully clothed

I often downplay mom's "problem". I thought I was saving her from embarrassment. The thing is, she'll tell anyone, she does tell everyone about what she's doing and what's going on and then she wonders why they give her advice. She pulls no punches about not being able to use the shower and the amount of cat excrement and everything else. While, of course, I run inside and hide.

The truth is it embarrasses me. I feel as though everyone thinks I should do something about it and yet I know that there's little I can do and me doing something won't solve the problem. She needs to do something. She needs to want to do something.

The upshot is that if she's telling the whole wide world then there's no reason I shouldn't. So here are the unexpurgated pictures. I took them on the down low Thursday afternoon and 2 hours later at the nursing home celebration mom lamented that we hadn't taken any photos. "Do not worry mother of mine, I've got you covered."

If Kath thought I was a saint yesterday and that my mom is crazy then god knows what she'll think today.

Oh, and Chrome, you can like yellow cats all you want, you don't have to like this one, mom has another one. He's awesome. Mostly she calls him Little Yellow Cat but sometimes she screams "SYNDEY" at him (the name of one of the cats she and my dad appropriated from neighbors when they were first married) and wonders why he doesn't respond. He needs to be neutered but as soon as that's taken care of he'll probably be the best cat you've ever met. On a whim I picked him up and put him on my shoulders. He's not a huge fan of the picking up part but he loved to just ride around on my shoulders as long as I'd let him. Don't settle for the first of anything you see in mom's house there will always be another.

Ok, so here you go, the front porch. It may not look like I've done much work here but when I arrived there wasn't enough room on the top step for my hips to fit so I could sit down. Since that's the only place on the property where one can actually sit I moved mountains (literally) to consolidate and make room for my fat ass to cop a squat.

Here's the music room, first room you get to when you walk in the side door there. For the record, the pile of boxes directly in front there are all empty, they're being used for sorting papers and precious objects and stuff so they don't really count as clutter because I can envision a day when they'll be gone. As an aside, Ulserad is a freaking saint. He says he's not, he says he's "just" a good friend. I say tomato - tomahto big guy. He works Mon-Fr and his 2 nights to cook at his house are Mon and Tues but he's spent the last 2 nights breaking down boxes and tying them up for the recycling pick up tomorrow. Mostly there's nothing that people can do for this nightmare but sometimes there is something and I felt awful asking him to do this but he was very cool about it. If he drank I'd buy him a bottle of something decadent. Perhaps Pepsi has a particularly good vintage.

You go through the music room, past the little connector hall to the bathroom and into the living room and then through the living room and out the front door. As of the time I departed you could walk from side door to front without ever having to turn to the side to accomodate your...curves. This shot is from the connector hall into the living room.

This is another view of the living room, from the stairs. Spacious, no? I want to point out that the middle of the couch there is completely clear! From this angle it's hard to tell but that cat bed and the butter churn (I know, butter churn, it's just not a battle worth fighting) are on the trunk in front of the couch not on the couch itself.

Up to this point you may have been looking at me like you need to reserve me a seat on the short bus. "Progress?" you've said, "What progress? That place is a sty! It's worse than a sty! I wouldn't let my pig live there." Well, here are some views of the kitchen so you can compare the previous views of rooms on which we busted our asses to the following views of the kitchen which we did not touch. (Yes, she needs to be able to cook but she started off in one direction and she got a foothold and I felt like the laws of inertia should rule.) So, here's the kitchen from the door of the music room. See that path? When I showed up all the paths through all the rooms looked like that. See why the whole walking while facing forward thing was such a big deal?

What does your kitchen table look like? Too cluttered for your brain to deal? You see why I laugh at you when you say that? This is my mom's table.

Here's an example of the creep of the badness. At some point there was no place to put something down and mom was desperate so, just for now, she yanked out a drawer part way and balanced whatever precious thing it was on the open drawer. How many drawers can you see in this picture?

This is her stovetop. No, I'm not kidding.

That about says it all, doesn't it?


  1. You done good, kiddo. And just remember, when the world goes to heck in a handbasket....wait, it's already there.

    Anyway, when things really get bad, we're all going to be knocking on your mom's door, because she's got a butter churn, along with anything else we might need.

    Stay strong, you are doing a great job.

  2. Honestly your Mom's house is heaven to me.
    So here is my plan you must channel me.
    Or I could fly out there.

    Damn. I really wish I was closer.

    I know you feel naked and overwhelmed plus 1,000.

    Put on your best wench outfit or pirate princess costume and let the treasure hunt begin.

    My Mother didn't even save my first baby photos or my hospital bracelet for me. God, your Mother really loves you honey. She saved everything you touched.
    I mean that.

    Let the channeling begin....

  3. OH. My. God.
    Well. that about sums it all up for us, doesn't it sisser? I agree with Suzanne. You done good. You done it all without fistfulls of valium and for that I give you the crown. What crown yousay? I'm pretty sure I saw one in the kitchen. On the stove. Right over there.
    All I can think of is those two British ladies who come in for Oprah and clean everything up. . . pretty sure this would stroke them out, eh? hee hee hee. fun with Oprah. we could work on that!!

    Love love love and light and SPACE to sit, all coming to you from me!

  4. Anonymous10:59 AM

    Kudos to you for your strength, optomism and sense of humor in all this. Inertia is such a powerful force, and on you battle to help out your mom. I'm sending sunny thoughts your way.

  5. Okay - I had a good idea of what it was like down there (having been there a few times in high school), but now I see where the snarky comment about MY cleaning came from. I'm so, so sorry.

    Anything you need, my dear, I'm right here for you.

  6. Holy good lord. You ARE a saint.

    No judgments, but damn, I worry about your mom's safety. But I guess she doesn't really live there anymore (??) You are doing the best you can with a practically impossible situation. I admire that greatly.