We were all sitting on the couch Sunday at around 7:30 when my phone rang, it was my mother.
She told me to hold on that there was somebody she wanted me to talk to. My mother is also overly dramatic so the person to whom she was giving the phone could have been any number off a list of people. Pleasantly is was my cousin, Dwayne who I had not seen in a very long time until this past March. He is currently on a deployment to Afghanistan and was here for his two week break before returning to finish serving his time there.
Immediately when she handed him the phone, I could tell she had it on speaker so that she could hear what I was going to be saying to him. I asked what he was doing back because I was unaware of his leave time as usual. I am never kept in the know about anything that involves the family that lives outside the fence of the farm. There was a lot of commotion going on in the back as I could barely understand what he was saying. I soon learned what all the noise was in the background, the family had gotten together to see Dwayne but to also send his daughter, Deanna off, she had joined the Army and was heading to boot camp. For any one who has a smidgen of brain between his or her ears, we all know that neither of the events occur in a few days notice.
As I talked to him, I apologized for not being there but informed him that no one had let me know that anything was going on. I expressed that we would have made a point to be there had we known. He said he understood, but my mother is in the background saying she didn't know anything about it until the last minute. As I explained earlier, neither of these events happen quickly.
I am taken aback on a regular basis by her behavior and lack there of any concern for my feelings. I am coming to realize in a very direct way that I think she does not even like me much less love me. And yeah, yeah, yeah I know that everybody loves everyone differently but come on, I love all of my children and am proud of their achievements and I'm there help them up when they fall. I would like one explanation of how you dislike your child to the point that the progress of the child whether good or bad is never relayed to anyone especially relatives.
I'll elaborate. Nik, the kids and I went to the family get together back in March of this year, my cousin Donna invited us. In eight years since I left Winnsboro, got divorced and had been on my on with the children, this was the first invitation that my family had received. Against my better judgement we went. For two weeks and I am not being facetious, I had worried myself sick literally. It went better that I had expected. My family, not my mother, looked like they had seen a ghost as we came in. See my cousin Donna didn't tell anybody that we were coming in the event that I changed my mind. An awkward hush and thirty people froze when we came in. for my aunts that is a major feat, they also have something to say. In all honesty I just wanted to run, but I dug deep and found strength and stayed and it helped a great deal that Nik was there otherwise I wouldn't have gone.
As I talked to my Aunts and Uncles I realized that mother had not even told anyone how we were. None of them had any contact information for me, none of them knew where we lived, where I worked. It was as if I had fallen off the face of the earth and had reappeared.
Unintentionally, I stole my mother's spotlight that day. It is evident in every picture that my daughter took that my mother was visibly upset that we came to the get together. My mother had had back surgery a few days prior so she was supposed to be in the spotlight, she was sporting her walker, that the doctor said she didn't need.
I didn't go to steal her thunder, but because I wanted to see my cousins, their children, my aunts and uncles.
As with any get together everybody is asked to bring something to either eat or drink or paper goods. I volunteered to bring all the ingredients for homemade ice cream. I asked my Uncle Ray if he still had his hand cranked churn. He didn't, much to my disappointment. When my Uncle Ray found out that I was brining the ingredients, he called me to ask if I could afford to purchase all the items. I thought he was so sweet in doing that, he told me he'd help me buy it if I needed him to. I thanked him and declined with much pride.
Growing up every Sunday was spent at my granny's houses, complete with dinner, baseball outside and homemade ice cream in hand cranked churns. There were three of those churns, one with strawberry, one with banana and the other with peach flavored ice cream. Churning the ice cream had become a game. Daddy was on one, Uncle Ray and the Uncle Wayne on the last. That was the afternoon entertainment, seeing who could churn the fastest. Week after week they churned away as we children watching in amazement while we drooled on ourselves waiting on the best ice cream. Brewster's and Marble slab had nothing on that ice cream.
My family knows that we are all doing well now and hopefully I will have a direct line to the family functions but I don't know.