The Unbearable Banishment: Anniversary / Teach your children

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Anniversary / Teach your children

My mom passed away a year ago today. There's no sadness. Only happy memories. She drifted away peacefully on a cloud of morphine.

When she was in the hospital and obviously not going to recover, my brother asked her, "Hey, ma, are you going to haunt me?"

"Not if you don't want me to."

That's how we rolled with her. And she with us. That's how it was done and we loved it.

Actually, now that I consider it, I *am* kind of sad that The Daughters will never know her. She was rock solid, that one.

* * *

On the afternoons when I don't have work, I try to sneak away to the museums. The crowds are thin, especially early in the morning. Can you look at masterworks too many times? Nay, I say. What is boring for many, never gets old for me.

One thing that was new to me—something I never saw on the weekends—were the roving classes. Groups of kids sit, surprisingly patient and well-behaved, are queried by the docents and asked for feedback. I look at their faces and as the talks progress and for some, you can see a fog lifting and a new clarity arise.

Sometimes, they're given an assignment. For instance, Giacometti originally intended the piece below to include a second figure. His arm is suppose to be draped around someone's shoulders. But time ran out on the commission and he was forced to deliver it incomplete. The students were asked to draw that second figure. What THEY thought it should look like. The statue is, basically, a stick figure, so it doesn't take a lot of artistic dexterity to draw it.

I try to get The Daughters into the museums a couple time a year, but it's tough. I do what I can.


Blogger savannah said...

i understand completely, sugar. 21 years this june. i'm glad you have happy memories to share with the daughters.

re the museums - each time is one more than the last. they'll remember more than you know. xoxoxox

May 27, 2010 at 4:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your Mom sounds like one of the best.

May 27, 2010 at 4:57 PM  
Blogger Ponita in Real Life said...

Seven years this past January for my mum, and it will be 21 years in August for my dad. Miss them both... and like your mum, they were both rock solid too. Remembered and cherished with much love and laughter.

Museums and galleries are lovely, awe inspiring, thought provoking places... I love them too. You're lucky to have such world renowned ones to roam. xoxo

May 27, 2010 at 8:19 PM  
Blogger mapstew said...

C'mere bud! (Manly hugs)!

Now lets go to the quiet corner and get slowly pissed(that's 'drunk' here) out of our heads while we remember our kin!


May 27, 2010 at 9:19 PM  
Blogger The Unbearable Banishment said...

Savannah: I'm a lucky soul. That's for sure. I kinda wish she would haunt me.

MIT: She really was. And I'm not just saying that because she's my mom. Well. Maybe I am.

Ponita: It's a good thing I accidentally wound up in New York. There was no grand plan. I went where the wind blew me.

Map: Okay. First round on me. But I have to warn you. I'm a lousy drunk. It comes on too quick and I become too "charming."

May 27, 2010 at 9:29 PM  
Anonymous daisyfae said...

your mom sounds delightful. families should meet each other where they are...

May 27, 2010 at 10:22 PM  
Blogger Nimpipi said...

You know, I envy my niece. She's 6 and she gets to chill with my grandmother -- HER great-granddaughter. They're best buds. They have memories. I envy that.

I should have kids soon.

Love to your mum where ever she is. I hope that every now and then, maybe at the museum, you see traces of her in The Daughters.

May 28, 2010 at 12:30 AM  
Anonymous nuttycow said...

Although your daughters won't get to know your mother personally, they'll know her through you. And, judging my your memories of her, that'll be as good.

May 28, 2010 at 3:50 AM  
Blogger The Unbearable Banishment said...

Daisy: All moms are delightful. Well...except, apparently, for Tennessee Williams' mom.

Nimpipi: Having kids because you feel you "should" is a dangerous game. Be cautious.

Nutty: My 8-year old knew her. She still asks questions about her. But the 3-year old? Nada.

May 28, 2010 at 6:59 AM  
Blogger kyknoord said...

Sounds like your mom did a good job on you. Your kids will certainly benefit from her presence by proxy.

May 28, 2010 at 7:04 AM  
Blogger Ms Scarlet said...

I get my Grandmother to haunt me. I try to use her favourite phrases... this way I still feel close to her.

May 28, 2010 at 7:51 AM  
Anonymous RubyTwoShoes said...

Oh I would love to see some of what the kids come up with in those drawings!
Wonderful sentiments about your Ma too, I hope I have the same strength when the times coms that I need it

May 28, 2010 at 11:11 PM  
Blogger Ellie said...

My mom used to always take me to museums when I was a kid. I will always be thankful for her exposing me to so much.

May 29, 2010 at 3:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't bear the thought of losing my mum. :( I'm sorry about yours. Although happy too, that you had a gentle passing.

May 31, 2010 at 3:35 PM  

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