Saturday, June 7, 2008

A Busy Day

Mom had a very busy day yesterday. In addition to washing and changing the sheets on her bed, she decided, early in the morning, to defrost her mini-refrigerator. Usually she asks for help with this job, but yesterday she decided to attempt it on her own. After switching off her refrigerator, she promptly forgot all about it. The melting ice soon filled the shallow tray under the freezer compartment. When she tried to empty the overflowing tray, she spilled the water, soaking the carpet.

I have noticed something new about her. She's a little more nonchalant these days after years of worrying and fretting over every little thing. Perhaps chronic low-level anxiety is why a doctor put her on valium over 30 years ago. In any case, she usually has to have things just so. A year ago, she would have been in a tizzy over the wet carpet. This time, she merely said, "Oh, it'll dry in a day or two."

She has been uncharacteristically stoic about recent major losses. When she accidently threw out her wedding and engagement rings in February, she "was awake all night" after first discovering their loss. After a day or two, it was, "Oh, well." Similarly, I thought she'd grieve deeply when Arlo, our beagle, had to be put to sleep. She surprised me. The woman who's always claimed an extraordinary love of animals, the woman who sobbed over the death of her cat, Sadie, just a year ago, the woman who spent every day for the past nine years with Arlo at her feet, appears to miss him not at all.

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