A South African, married to an American, finally adapting to my adopted country. I love life, laughter, good friends and the warmth that my two kids have filled me with. I glory in the colors of my life and am grateful for the gray days as they allow me to appreciate the rainbows.

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Location: New York, United States

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Friday, March 03, 2006

Surreal Appeal

I had posted earlier this week about Bob's mom passing away. Bob had an unfortunate incident in his 20's with a medical mishap that has left the former tennis pro/ pianist partially handicapped. Josh adn I went to take him out for his birthday on Wednesday, he asked me to look through his moms costume jewellery and see if there were any pieces I wanted to take with me. I did not feel comfortable pilfereing through all her things so I said I would take some for the kids for dress up. He just dropped them all in a bag for me and told me to take them. He wanted me to look through her bags and clothes and see if I wanted anything. Once again not feeling too comfortable I declined again. We started talking and he said how he had no idea how he was going to clean out her things, Thursday was a slow day at work (it turned out to be a snow day as well) so I said I would come help him. It was unbelievable looking through her things as I packed them away. Its funny but I used to see her at least twice a year on the Jewish Holidays she would always accompany Bob to my folks or our house wherever we were having it. She was always this soft spoken, grey haired lady in beige clothes. Its funny how ones clothes tell such a different story of a persons life, in her closets I discovered a bohemian woman, a sophisticated woman, a woman who loved to shop, who had a taste for whimsy and sweaters, so many sweaters and shoes. Oh my word she had so many of them it was truly unbelievable. Her handbag collection was huge and so neat and clean, oh my word, any person with OCD would have been proud to have a handbag collection so spotlease, eacg bag had one tissue or hanky in it and was spotless, I swear not even a piece of lint. Here was tons, and I swear tons of stuff impecably packed, she even lined her socks up. She had sexy side to her, lingerie that surprised me, I guess you don't have 57 years of marriage without a few surprises. Bob left me to do it, as he could just not cope, half way through I called him to ask if he minds if I throw out some hangers, I had three full trashbags full of them by that stage, he said no, he said he could not come back up, he could not deal, it finally hit him, I had been surprsied how detached he had been, not surprised becasue his mom drove him nuts which she did, in fact his dad's dying words were an apology for leaving Bob to have to deal with his mom by himself. No I was surprised that no matter how we feel about them they are still our mommy's they still the only person in the world who can make it feel better or who can put us in a bad mood with hello. Who can illicit so many emotions from us and then she was gone and he did not seem to feel it. But the reality hit, and it hit hard. He booked himself a trip to Florida to try and escape from the pain, he is going to have to carry it with him for the rest of his life because a mom's love is forvere no matter how it is conveyed.

Its funny as I was packing away her wordly goods I could not stop thinking about how precise her life was lived and how at the end it is just reduced to stuff. Stuff to cherish, stuff to hand down to the next generations and stuff to discard. I had to smile when I though with horror how the poor person who cleared out my stuff would feel and what they would say how they would wonder how I even functioned at all. How I could be so organized in the outside world and so scrambled at home, I sure hope for my kids sake that at some stage in my old age I get possessed by some minimilist cult.

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