All I Want Is A Normal Life

Musings from a girl named Normal.

Posts Tagged ‘mom

I can see De Styx from Denial

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God, denial is a funny thing. Ok, not funny ha-ha, but funny fucked-up. Over the past week, I’ve decided that I should go to visit my Grandma again. My mom said she thinks that G’ma is well enough to recognize me, but I was trying to explain to my mom that MY G’ma went away three years ago, and the person there is just kind of G’ma-ish, but not really G’ma to me.

My mom and G’ma had a really strained relationship at times when I was growing up. My mom went and told them (both grandma and grandpa) that they had a “dysfunctional” family, since that was what her therapist told her and, in many ways, I guess her family wasn’t all open with their emotions and stuff when they were growing up… but that’s a lot of family stuff that a lot of families have to deal with. I mean, my family life wasn’t all that good until much later. I think the only reason we have such a good relationship now is because we’ve all been able to put a lot of that crap behind us and move on as friends. All families are fucked up in many ways. I don’t know a single one that isn’t. So there’s really no judgment there.

But Mom and Grandma didn’t really have that great of a relationship always, so now that mom is getting to know grandma’s kinder side — the side I loved her for — she’s getting to really appreciate the best thing about grandma: her heart. And that’s about all there is of Grandma anymore. So all that stuff that was some parent-child dynamic isn’t there and both of them just get to appreciate each other: my mom gets to appreciate grandma without all the weird mis-communications, and my grandma gets to appreciate how amazing, strong, and caring that my mom is. About all this, my mom feels like I’m judging her or like I’m saying she only loves grandma when she’s frail or something. But it’s not like that. It just that I feel like she’s finally getting to know the person I knew.

And even as I type this, I feel myself distancing from the situation, making it a story, not a thing I’m actually going through. I’m going to try to bring it back.

My grandma is not dead. But I’m acting like she is. I’m acting like the shell of the person isn’t important… like a husk or something. But she’s still in there. She’s still her. And even if all that’s left is her heart, that’s the best part about her. I miss her brain, her understanding, her caring, all these things are gone. But the best part is still there, at least according to my mom. And I’m avoiding — yes, I said it: avoiding — going up there, not because it’s not important to me, but because I’m in denial of my feelings about her. My feelings of love, my feelings of loss. I’ve done everything in my power not to think about it. I’ve even taken anti-anxiety medicine that my friends have very kindly given to me. All these things make me question what I should do. They make me calm, but I am not calm. Truly. Really. In my heart.

And I can never understand if I’ve done the “right” thing until it’s too late to do the “right” thing anymore. So I have to take a chance and face the panic of losing the person who has been, for most of my life, my favorite family member.

Since I decided to go up there, I’ve been all moody and needy to David, which has made him kind of pull away, which is really hard. Really fucking hard. Because I need a close friend now, but Teresa, my best friend from years ago who knows me pretty well, but who is just awful at getting back to me. And David is not really helping. He just doesn’t understand why I’m so insecure and constantly needing reassurance that he loves me. And I am not one to get hurt, so I, of course, have to pull away from him. I have to protect myself. I just really want Teresa, since she and I understand each other around stuff like this. But she’s also got her own problems and really needs a friend herself these days.

My mom says G’ma might not last three weeks. I am going to try to go up there on the 23rd.

Side note: Nick, this is why I haven’t written back about this and probably will never be able to pull myself to write back about this. I’m really weird about my emotions around this. This is my journal.

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Written by normalslife

January 12, 2009 at 5:12 am

The Weekend with Mom : Yucca Valley, Salton Sea, and others

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OK! The time has come for the massive weekend explanation. I find it easiest to illustrate with photos, so I’m linking off to my Flickr set.

Yucca Valley
I have no photos from our visit to Deeze and Annette’s. Their house feels so much like home to me that I don’t even really think to take photos there. My mom and I stayed up late talking to them and it was so nice to see my mom genuinely appreciating my friends.

Pioneertown
Similarly, the photos from Pioneertown really were pretty lame. My mom took some pretty good ones, but she doesn’t use Flickr, so it’s a little hard to get the photos in here without some amount of effort. Plus, she doesn’t read this blog (as far as I know), so I don’t want to give her indication of how to find it.

The Walk Near PioneertownSeusscape
Mom and I went for a walk through the burned out brush near Pioneertown, CA, outside of Yucca Valley. I took some photos of plants and found two cans from when there were pull tabs that pulled off the can! One is a reaaaaly old Coke can and the other is a Coors with a bullet hole in it. I didn’t take photos of those, but they’re sitting in my car in arrested decay.
Bright Orange Flower The Lesson of the Empty Space

The Windmills

A Windmill is Very Tall

A Windmill is Very Tall


On our way down to Salton Sea and Slab City, we stopped off at some of the huge windmills that are in the mouth of the Coachella Valley. I’d never seen the windmills up close, so it was quite a thrill. As you may or may not know, Jetfuel, Connie-Lynne, and I all undertook to build windmills for the Burn this past year, but they actually completed theirs (I did not).

WindmillsWindmillWindmills

Salton Sea
This warrants a large photo:
Dead Fish
Mom and I drove off the main road and down to the Salton Sea shore (no, she didn’t sell sea shells by the shore of the Salton Sea). I was amazed (disgusted?) to find that the whole place smelled AWFUL (truly stomach turning) and it was pretty clear why after about 40 seconds of standing there: the entire shore was covered in mounds of dead fish, fish bones, and bird poo. Really, every gross thing you can imagine was all over the place there. I don’t know how to describe how gross it smelled, but it sure was picturesque:
Salton Sea
Why are all the fish dead? It’s seasonal and based on agriculture in the area. Nitrates and other fertilizer runoff causes a huge algae bloom in the Salton Sea, resulting in a reduction of oxygen in the water. As the algae consumes all the oxygen, the fish literally suffocate in the water, dying by the thousands. They wash ashore and rot.
Acres of dead fishmore dead fish
There were also a lot of birds hanging out:
Another Bird in Flight

Salvation Mountain
One of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen is Salvation Mountain

Crap. I have to go to work, since my mom needs to use the internet and I need to send a big file.

Also, there was this sunset:
desert sunset

Written by normalslife

November 26, 2008 at 5:23 pm