Growing up in an extended family gave me limitless face time with grandparents who couldn’t pass each other in a room without scowling. Every other grown-up relative at home had only one persona: My youngest aunt was always petulant with a noticeable disdain for me. (My crime was usurping her position as the baby of the family.) My second aunt, along with my parents were open-hearted, affectionate and oh-so-easy to love. But the same Grandparents who indulged my whims and showered me with kisses were openly hostile with each other. Leading me to love them separately while we lived together on Thatford Avenue, in our two-family house with the rusted front gate.Read More
One More Thing Before I Go
Last spring when the scent of lilacs followed me from the backyard into my kitchen, I thought of my mother’s distant cousin and her daughters, who, like my lilacs, visited yearly when the earth warmed and the days grew longer. I pictured us all in idyllic memories of jump rope games and playing with dolls. But, except for MaryAnn, the littlest daughter, I could not remember their names.
A few years ago, I could have called my mother. She would have teased me for my forgetfulness, asked what I was making for dinner (there was never a phone conversation where we didn’t talk about food) and repeated her mother-to-daughter mantra, “When are you coming over?” We would have shared stories of those long-ago days before hanging-up and re-joining our lives. But my mother has passed on and while the images of our family lingers-the details are lost. I write One more thing before I go, my living record for my son, in hope that one day, when he has a question I can no longer answer, it can be found in this blog.