I saw this and it reminded me of the story of Mike, my mom, and the man we call “the Troll.”
We were on vacation after my senior year of high school (I think it was after senior year?), and Mike really wanted to go fishing in the Potomac river. So, he found a brochure, called the guide, and scheduled it.
Mike and Mom took the train from Philadelphia to Doylestown (pronounced: Dulls-ton). Then they met the Troll and he put them in his truck and took them on a drive. My mom later admitted that she was terrified and though they were going to die.
The Troll kept looking over his shoulder at stuff along the road, while taking his eyes off the road, explaining that he lives with his mom during the winter months. He would eventually take them to a spot along the river – the same spot where he camped/lived during the summer months.
Mom wouldn’t let Mike out of her sight, and got worried when the Troll took Mike around a bend in the river and back to his camp (turns out he’s just a weird dude and not some crazy psycho-killer). She said that sitting in the hot sun on a log all day without a book was one of the most miserable experiences of her life, but she was glad to go because it meant that Mike got to go fishing. It’s a way funnier story when we re-tell it, so have Mom and Mike do that for you someday.
It’s that maternal love that you never let go of. (I had a maternal love moment the other day and then cried – because the love was too much and it had to spill out of me via tear ducts – because of how perfect Carlos’s feet are. That’s how I know I’m a mother – even if it is just to a cat – and how I know that love like that is way stronger than you can comprehend.)
And this picture, for me, reminds us that sometimes we have to do terrible things for the people we love.
For me, this means cleaning out my room at my mom’s house. It’s been my room since I was three, and now she wants it. Selfishly, I do not want to let her have it. I also don’t want more stuff at my house, since I have never been able to master the adult habit of organization. Instead, I know that all of the stuff will languish in piles or boxes in my closet or around my room.
I wish there was a picture of that I could post.
I also wish I could accurately describe the face that I’m making right now. It’s an equal mix of disgust (for cleaning), sadness (for clearing out my childhood room), disdain (for my mother’s demands), and shame (because I should have done this years ago). Mostly, it’s just a lot of nose wrinkling mixed with whatever procrastination looks like.
Procrastinating. I’m still doing it. I keep telling Mom that I’m not going to budge on my room until she sews my favorite pencil skirt. Maybe I’ll just stick to that. It’s a little bit like nuclear disarmament, but not. We just avoid the subject during diplomatic missions (or visits, whichever you choose to call them) and carry on.
But I did promise her that I’d make some headway tomorrow. Which means….she’d better break out the sewing kit and get that gorgeous black skirt back in my rotation.