Last year – almost to the week – I wrote a post about how if I had to give my mom a nickname it would be Goldilocks. Everything was “too” – too hot, too cold, too sweet, too spicy…you know what I mean – nothing was just right!
Well, today I had to go hide in the laundry room (and actually got a bunch of socks matched, so it wasn’t a total waste!) because my mom was on a bit of a roll. It didn’t matter what the subject, the question, the event – she had something to say about it! If I’m being honest, a LOT of somethings to say about it!
And as I was fetching socks out of my dryer, all I could think of was the old “I’d walk a mile for a Camel” slogan and then I giggled – because really, I had just walked 50 feet, in a sense, because of a Camel. The new unfiltered mom, just like the old unfiltered Camel cigarettes. I’ve never been a smoker, but that slogan, that trait, just stuck with me…no idea why. But hiding in my laundry room to avoid her unfiltered commentary, it cracked me up.
Somewhere in these past 8 years, mom has lost her filter. She says whatever she wants to. Whenever she wants to. I’m sure it was more natural for my mom to abandon that filter than perhaps for others – she has always prided herself for “speaking her mind”. Today, however, I’m not sure it has anything to do with pride and I am certain it has very little to do with the traditional mind.
Today she was down-right mad about the 1, 2, 3, 4, FIVE cars parked outside our home – 1 in my driveway, 2 in the neighbor’s driveway, 1 in front of their house and 1 just down the street. She thought that was ridiculous. And then somewhere in her Alzheimer’s mind – she got caught up in the their colors and what that meant about the people who owned them (I’ve never been sorrier to own a red car!) and 4 minutes in, she went on a rage about why she isn’t allowed to have a car anymore!
It got heated! At first I tried to interject pleasantries and explanations and then to change the subject. NOPE. Not having any of that. No thank you!
So far, she’s been fired up about food and how little she gets to eat (surprised she could get the words out with her mouth full of Oreos!), the cars, a teacher she had who snapped the waistband of her skirt while she was teaching, why everyone went away and left her here with “HERRRRR” – that’s me! And that was it…
I broke the cardinal rule and took it personally and jumped in to defend myself and to “reason” with her….HA! I know better! I lasted 3 minutes in the ring with my little 86-year-old mother. I tapped out. I knew this wasn’t real world stuff. It was ugly Alzheimer’s stuff. And it would do far more damage than good to argue or even to sit and listen anymore. It was then that I had to make my getaway to the sock-folding sanctuary known as my laundry room. Mom can’t get into my laundry room. The path is too narrow for her walker….aren’t I mean?
But I had to go. Because now that she is all-the-way gone memory wise, she not only says whatever she wants…she says whatever she is feeling. And let’s just say, she is not a big fan of anyone who “works in this place” (that’s me and my family) right now.
I know she is still adjusting to the whole Back-To-School thing, but there are just some things you never, ever want to hear your mom say. Ever!
So in just under a year, mom has gone from being “Goldilocks” to “Joe Camel”…not exactly a Smooth Character, but definitely unfiltered!
I suppose it’s wrong to trivialize it or make light of it or to share our dirty laundry in a public forum like this…BUT…that’s why I blog. To get it out. To put it in perspective. To realize I am surrounded by others who have or are going through similar things.
So I typed it. And now I have a way to get through the next unfiltered tirade with a smile! That and maybe a quick trip to fold socks in my laundry room!