Monday, August 29, 2011
In the Dark
My mother and I have spent long years not being close, and there is a lot that I don't know about her. Sitting in the dark by her hospital bed, I learned that she likes to sleep with her arms thrown up over her head when she sleeps on her back. I do that. Tim always thought that it was cute, like a baby sleeps. I know now that I get that from my mother.
When she sleeps on her side, she uses two pillows. I knew without asking how to arrange them. I use two pillows myself. She tucks her hand beneath her cheek. I do too.
Even though I look like my father, I know that my blue eyes are her eyes, that my thin hair is her thin hair, and that my low self esteem is her low self esteem. We probably have other things in common, but I will never know what they are. Not now. I sit in the dark of her bedroom, and I count her respirations by her moan on the exhale. I touch her cold hands. I watch the clock, unable to tear my eyes from it, watching the minutes tick past, one at a time.
I remember a soap she used to watch. A somber voice would tell us "Like sand through an hour glass, these are the days of our lives." I sit in the dark thinking.