Spent a lot of time thinking yesterday. Much was about my conversation with my mom, wherein we covered both old and new territory. I really don't know much about my parents as people. More about my dad than my mom and it is all pretty carefully filtered. I was trying to give my mom something of a picture of Bruce because if I could talk her into moving up here I would though I am sure it would be pretty uncomfortable in many ways and as she said, Bruce WOULD be terrified if she did. However, I'd prefer that, and I have an intuition that he would too over her staying put at this point of her life. If not the close family rosy picture that I am sure she somehow envisioned I would at least like her to have some peace and be taken care of a bit before she dies. And she has always been pretty healthy, she could have many years ahead of her but she shouldn't be driving an she tells me Corey (2nd nephew, who she says tries to be good to her) tends to eat anything healthy she has. She told me she's been drinking Ensure. I think of that stuff as poison.
Anyway, I was in the process of telling her the Inez/ alligator story when she broke in and said she had once ridden an alligator, named Jimmy. I am guessing it was probably at the old alligator farm that used to be near Knott's Berry Farm, but maybe not. I would have asked more except she segued into information I hadn't known. I knew she'd been born in Provo, the second child, she has an older sister and 9 years later a brother. I knew they had moved to St George where my grandfather had much to do with building the old airport. I think they moved to California, Inglewood, when my mother was five. I know when they did move my grandfather took a cow and his pet coyote. But I hadn't known that "they" (the girls? the whole family?) had half the basement for naps, because it was cooler. The other half she told me was filled with my grandfather's snakes and spiders and other exotic fauna. I had known he had a bear (who used to drink a gallon of beer at a time) an a lion (which eventually was shot, stuffed and added as a mascot to the St George Lion's Club) But I hadn't known he had bought them from a circus. She told me she took a black widow and I think a trap door spider to school for show and tell in 4th grade. I learned where a necklace I always remembered my grandmother wearing came from. It was hotly contended for after her death, though it was only enamel and if the family knows its genesis I am a little surprised that so many wanted it. I felt it should go to the young relative who was living with my grandma when she died, who found her body. It was the only thing she asked for and she really loved my grandma. But she didn't get it. Later, this girl (I really liked her) committed suicide.
My mom and I also talked some about my dad, and my parents' relationship. She surprised me by telling me she had not meant to marry my dad (this surprised me because she was slavishly devoted to him) I would have asked more questions but my family history is very volatile grounds and it was Mother's Day and I wasn't looking to stir the pot though several times I did. She was unhappy that my father would play tennis (and oh so much more) with other women but not with her. I probably should not have said it, but I did say she was not known for having fun. I also told her she could be very hard to get along with and why I think so. It was a rare occasion that either of us was so open with the other. We also talked about her attitude towards men. People and relationships are complicated and you never know what gets people into them or what keeps them there when it seems like a terrible idea to stay. I can say that about the first vow I ever made was not to be like my mother. Last night I was thinking of my own relationship history. That first one was a doozy for me. I have never and don;t expect i ever will recover from it though I did everything I could think of to. I know it is because of how I am intrinsically and how different it was from how he was. Looking back, I would not have fought one iota more than I did to retain the relationship because he didn't love me, hell he apparently didn't even know me so there was no possibility to make anything good of it, but I do wonder what it might have been like if we had not crossed my criterion for commitment. I do feel deceived there, but people lie when it is to their advantage to do so or when they think a matter is not important.while I should not have entered into subsequent relationships after that one, the second was a total surprise to me, but much as I wanted to i couldn't keep that either. My current relationship, though I love, respect and trust him and think we will be together till one of us dies it is limited. Probably mostly my fault and I feel badly about that all the time. Every once in awhile we try to talk about it but things I just can't seem to explain and I would not want to hurt him for the world. So, basically we each choose to settle for what the other can give and wish it were more.
Today is his birthday and I am going to get him some chicken and dumplings which he loves and i cannot seem to make right and some brownie ice cream and some rainbow sherbert (sounds like a strange combination to me but that's what he likes) and if I can find something as a gift that too though I am usually good at shopping for people i have never been good at shopping for Bruce. And that's a pity because he loves presents. I wish mine to him were better.