Monday, January 25, 2010

African Violets and life lessons

This is a picture of an African Violet plant I have. It was given to me in the spring by SDaughter's SSigOther. We were at a fundraiser event for SGrandson, he gave me the plant, so I gave him a game which I won. Very nice guy, nice gesture. I think of him whenever I look at the plant. He has been so good to and for SD and SGS, just who you want for them.

I had no hopes that the plant would survive, it got tumbled a bit on the drive home, few leaves broken or bent even though I thought I had it propped to perfection for the ride. I have never been very good at growing African Violets. SMom on the other hand, is the Queen of growing houseplants, her Christmas Cactus bloom not only when they are supposed to in December, but sometimes even for Easter. Her African Violets are the stars, bloom constantly, double blossoms, beautiful to see. She has not been shy about reminding me over the years that mine do not bloom, and hers are magnificent.

Now, mine is magnificent, and at her house yesterday, I noted that one of hers is dying. I mentioned it to her, but she just agreed and sighed. I asked if I could do something for it and she said no. Yesterday, I planted a gift for her which she received from her SNiece, some

paper-white bulbs. I was really surprised at the fragile way that I felt knowing that she could not do this task. I will do everything I can to make sure they bloom, something to look forward to, a future plan, for her and me.

SM has had some downward turns on and off since last fall. She goes into these

depressions, sleeps a lot, comes out of it, then days later cancels her plans for activities and visits, pulling herself down again. She is already taking meds for this, but she is not good at making lifestyle choices for her health. She quite often pretends when I call in the morning that she is not sleeping. Sleeping is ok, but not late in the morning when you need to keep your blood sugar normal. She takes her meds less than accurately, even though we set them up in little daily containers. Because of all these things, she puts herself into times when she needs to be checked by her MD to make sure nothing new is happening. Then tests are needed, which of course tire her out, which, etc, etc.

Here are two pictures of her from this week, notice the difference?

I would have thought she would have been happier yesterday, SSister#1 was there doing stuff for her-thank God for SS#1, and I brought over SGS for a visit to her after his Karate class. She loves company, but yesterday it did not work.

When I pick her up to go somewhere, she is barely verbal in the car, even to a point of being surly. When we get to our destination, she springs from the car-like she is a movie star putting on a performance-the show must go on. She laughs and chats with all these other people, some are just strangers. She brags about her family to others, even if she can not come up with their names, and moves very quickly around the room-defying anyone to think that she is 86 years old. Back in the car, I need to help her with the smallest of tasks, can not put on seat belt by herself, can not fill out a bank deposit slip, or even figure out how it works. She barely talks to me other than one word answers. I must be poor company, or simply just a child still looking for attention from their mother, even if she is still not aware after 62 years that the need is there. When will I learn to accept that it is what it is? That is something I don't think I will ever outgrow or hope for. This situation reminds me always to give to my children what I feel I have missed, more so now that they are adults, because I am not sure I recognized the need of a Mother's positive remarks when they were younger. I was so busy caring for, and teaching them to be, that I may have missed this very important ingredient. Maybe it is a genetic flaw?

I know this post sounds like "poor-me". It is simply my life as it happens.

So I watered her African Violet, hoping it would revive, but I know time is marching on, stomping on all the todays with a fierce authority.


Margaret Hall said...

This was such a loving lessons posting, Sally. It was introspective about Moms, and I thought that your writing was quite detailed...Thank you for sharing this most vunerable of thoughts..
Stay strong, and I hope that the violet was nourished..

sally said...

Thanks for the comment Margaret. Water and sunlight sometimes fix a problem, but sometimes they make it worse, fine line.