My mother is 101 years old. First, I will tell you all the "good" things about her. She graduated from college at the age of 90, (and was in the Guiness Book of World Records) she has written 11 books, she has traveled the world on her own, she is still extremely bright, reads a book a day, watches tennis matches and golf on TV, lived on her own until three months ago. She regularly jumps into her electric cart and peruses the downtown area where she lives. She is "beloved" by all who know her. I am constantly told how fabulous she is. However, even though her mind is as sharp as ever, physically she is deteriorating.
I am the third of four children. An older brother, a younger brother and an older sister. I married when I was 20 to a man she and my dad, who is now deceased absolutely loved. I had four children. When I was 37 I had an aneurism followed a week later by a stroke. I changed. That's all I can say. I became a different person. I no longer "believed" everything I had been taught by my mother and father. A horrible depression came after the aneurism which lasted off and on for 10-15 years.
Three years after my aneurism I asked my alcoholic husband for a divorce. He was devastated and told me I was "destroying" our family. He was extremely successful and he used this success to destroy me, or at least he tried. That is when I noticed that things had changed between my mother and myself. Now I realize she thought I was insane to divorce this man who seemingly provided me with every little thing I could desire. A year after my beloved father's death she invited my ex husband to sit with the family at his funeral, even though she knew about his death threats to me.
My sister even called me to ask if it was okay if she dated my ex husband. I was shocked. She had been with me the night he left me the death threats on the phone. Mother thought it was a great idea. She would have loved to have this rich man back in the family. (my ex would have nothing to do with my sister)
I was seeing a therapist and mother thought he was nuts. She did not beleive in going "outside" the family for help. He was a godsend to me. I checked myself into Sierra Tucson for co-dependency. Mom sent a letter to my counselor explaining why she wouldn't come to family week. (no one in my family came) She said that of all her four children, I had always been the problem. And she accused me of being responsbile for my father's death. It was devastating to me to have her read that letter in front of the group. That wasn't the first nasty missive I had recieved from her. Others both preceeded and followed that one. She is a writer, need I say more? I eventually got smart and would have my new husband read them first and then toss them. You have no idea how much I wanted to photocopy them and send the to her legion of admirers. I could not, and still cannot believe how a mother could write those things to her child.
So now it's been thirty some years since the aneurism. I met another man who is wonderful. We have been together for 20 years.
My sister, on the other hand, is definitely her favorite. Both she and my younger brother were given power of attorney two years ago. Without my knowledge. My older brother lives in another state and is somewhat immune to the goings on. Lucky him.
I could go on and on but will not. It's just too painful. She is notorious in our family for giving you something and then taking it back. We all know that. The latest is a ring she gave me. She feels like I have been ignoring her, which I have, so she called two days ago and asked for the ring back. I dread like anything going to her place. I don't want the ring. But I also don't want her to keep pestering me about it. So I called her yesterday and told her that I would not be giving the ring back. She immediately called me back and I didn't answer. She also didn't leave a message, which she usually does. So I am now expecting a letter.
I know this sounds incredible. A 101 year old mother who still gets to me. She's a strong mutha. I have decided to break all ties with her. But it's not as easy as it sounds. Thanks, for listening.
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