Sunday, December 27, 2009

Mama's Mama

I don't always think things through.

In my head, I thought we'd just jet over to the cemetery, leave some lilies, and have a few quiet moments in my head with my mom while the kids were distracted by Dave. I have a 2 and a half year old. This was not to be.

It had been a tough trek to California. (Trust me, once my thoughts are even a bit formed, I will dish.) My heart was a bit raw. I miss my mom all the time, but with the birth of a daughter it is sometimes unbearable. I was trying to push back the tears into their rightful ducts before Dave pointed to the cemetery and asked, "Is that a synagogue?"

Spence had asked repeatedly where we were going. I was at a loss. I finally stuttered out, "To go see Mama's Mama." I want to lie here and say that I had mentioned something about the fact that my mom was no longer living. But, it would be a lie. How do you mention death to a 2 and a half year old? Instead, I sidestep. I talk about my mom, but distract when the inevitable question arises.

When we parked between the two trees (one evergreen, the other deciduous), I bolted out of the car and started to attend to the graves. I brushed aside the bit of crabgrass that had started to cover the date of my mom's death. I tried not to remember how my grandfather would carefully take out polish and shine the grave. As if, as long as the grave looked new, time would not have really passed.

I finally relented to the cries of Spence. I nodded to Dave and he released Nora from the car seat, as I got him.

He held my hand. It was about a minute before he started repeating in increasing louder decibels, "But I don't see her. Where is she? Where is Mama's Mama?" I was stricken. I searched my brain for something that made sense. She's buried? She's no longer here? She's in heaven?

I murffled out something about heaven. About it being high in the sky. I might have thrown in a few paradise-type images, I honestly don't remember.

"I want to go to heaven right now. I want to see mama's mama. I want to go to heaven RIGHT NOW." He must have woken up and pressed his repeat button. I just wanted to hit pause. Just a moment to think. To come up with some sort of response and still have time to release the tears from my ducts.

"Me too, Spence. I want to see mama's mama right now. Me too," I paused. "Should we go get some ice cream?"

Thursday, December 10, 2009