Wednesday, August 13, 2008

'The Man' Tales - A Mother's Need?

Cid’s mother never stopped with the constant – and I can’t even say ‘chattering’ here – in Italian. I guess it was more like ‘nagging’ – but I can’t say for sure because it was in another language. All I can say is that Cid seemed to succumb to whatever she was saying and I watched helplessly as he slumped further and further down and looked ‘beaten’. I bit my lip and kept an eye on his oxygen meters – trying to let his mother have her say and her time with her son. I could see Cid giving up under the barrage and it was nonstop on her part.

When Cid tried to lie down on the couch his oxygen meter dropped to a scary low and he started to gasp for breath. I made him sit up and pushed as many pillows as I could behind his back, but it was obvious he was uncomfortable and had a hard time sitting like that. There was no easy chair in the condo and I pointed out that this is what he needed – a chair that he could relax in yet still be able to sit up and allow him to breathe. I even asked Cid if any of his neighbours might lend him a chair for a bit. My speaking made his mother purse her lips and glare at me, but I was more concerned about Cid’s breathing and his comfort.

I was taken by surprise when Cid’s uncle grasped my upper arm and pulled me to the front door and shoved my coat in my hands.

“We’re going to go look for a chair,” he said and steered me out the door.

Both of us were unfamiliar with Edmonton and we just drove around until we came across a furniture store. His uncle humoured me as I searched earnestly for a suitable chair and I could feel my anxiety levels skyrocketing and bursting out of the top of my head. I just couldn’t understand why they weren’t trying to make Cid more comfortable – even if it was only for a couple of days. To me the cost would have been well worth it.

Sometime during that aimless driving I realized that his uncle was just getting me out of the condo so the mother could be alone with Cid. He had never intended to make Cid more comfortable – it was all for the mother. This realization hit me like a ton of bricks in the face and I could feel that weight settling on my shoulders and bringing me down. I turned my face to the window and quit talking. When we got to the next furniture store I told him to go in himself – and he realised the game was up. I could see he was suddenly feeling just like me – and I didn’t care. He drove as slowly as he could back to the condo and almost dragged his feet as we approached the elevator. When we entered, I caught him shrugging his shoulders when Cid’s mother glared at us. I didn’t give a damn and went and made up Cid’s nebulizer and gave it to him. The look in Cid’s eyes told me everything.

That night as we prepared for bed, Cid asked me to sleep up with him instead of curled on the foot of the bed. I had been so afraid of bothering him while he slept that I had never thought of climbing in beside him. The effort of getting into bed had exhausted him and he lay with his eyes closed. Not wanting to disturb him, I curled up on the far side of the bed and tried to breathe as quietly as possible.


"What are you doing way over there?" His voice was raspy in the dark - almost overpowered by the hiss of the oxygen. It was his next words that crashed through my barriers and tugged at my heart. "Please come over here."

When he put his arm around me and pulled me tight up against him, I sighed. However, in a minute I sat up again and yanked off my nightgown before getting under the covers again and snuggling as tightly to him as I could. When the alarm went off to signal his nebulizer treatment, I found that I had wrapped my arms around his neck and had my head tucked under his chin. When I drew away to prepare his treatment, he smiled and said,

“All these years I’ve wanted to do this Aims. Thank you.”

When his mother opened the bedroom door in the morning and saw our naked bodies, Cid said,


“Close the door Mother.” In English

22 comments:

travelling, but not in love said...

A great post - bitter and sweet at the same time. She sounds like quite the mother, Aims. Well done you for standing up to her...and for standing by Cid....

Daryl said...

I echo TBNIL ... mainly cause I am too choked up to think of my own comment...

:-Daryl

bichonpawz said...

I'm at a loss for words also, aims...what a heart-wrenching time for you. And to have to put up with the mother...you were too kind! I think I would have blown a gasket!

menopausaloldbag (MOB) said...

Overbearing, overpowering and overtly unpleasant. I am always astonished at the nastiness of some human beings - especially a mother of a dying son.

I have the mother in law from hell and she is a deeply unpleasant character. Even my husband doesn't like her but she insists that I will be taking her in and caring for her - hell will freeze over first.

Poor Cid, poor you. Glad you got the upper hand.

Crystal Jigsaw said...

I think that must have been a beautiful moment, if only to show Cid's mother that she has to let go.

CJ xx

Anonymous said...

Oh, Aims, what a post. I am, once again, speechless. Margie

Leatherdykeuk said...

How beautiful.

BT said...

Fabulous post, aims. What a wonderful moment when Cid said 'close the door' to that awful woman. And what a sweet memory that night must be for you.

Irene said...

Now I have tears in my eyes, Aims, darn it. Did you do that on purpose? It must have felt great to him to feel your naked body next to his, finally. Why did you never get around to that anyway? Never mind answering that. Sigh...

rosiero said...

I think mothers of sons can be the worst to let go of their children.

Frances said...

What a desperate person she must have been. I pity her - something badly wrong there

CrystalChick said...

Hello. Thank you for visiting via Jeanne.
This was a very intense read. I don't know all the background here so I'll have to stop back again. Take care.

lisaschaos said...

Uh-oh! How is it that it seems romantic? But it does. :)

Maggie May said...

Very sad.At least you did everything in your power to help him and make him comfortable. A real tear jerker this.

Melanie said...

Well done Aims for giving Cid the courage to draw a boundary for his dreadful mother. beautiful moment for both of you.

As for the uncle -what an enabler!

Some people Aims must be so deeply miserable with themselves that they have to share it round. I hope that with time you could pity her but oooo she makes me cross!

Mean Mom said...

I haven't been around for a while, but I've just caught up. You are a strong lady. I'm so glad that you stayed with Cid after his mother appeared on the scene. Some wouldn't have been able to cope with her. I'm also glad that Cid was able to stand up to her, in spite of his weakness. How could any mother be so selfish at such a time?

CrazyCath said...

At last at last I have caught up. What a writer. What emotion. You keep me hanging on the edge of my seat whilst at the same time being right there in the middle of the action with you.

This post was so bittersweet. Well written.

Lane said...

I'm glad Cid was able, even in his weakened state, to say what he wanted. And you were there for him. So sad it had to go this way.

dawn said...

It was great you were there for him and he didn't have to deal with his mom alone. What was that uncle thinking? It was nice Cid had had enough too.

Lehners in France said...

At last Cid has finally had the courage to tell his mother that he has grown up and what is important to him. Debs x

A Mother's Place is in the Wrong said...

Dear Aims, just catching up at last. Another sad but beautiful truth from your life - and how wonderful that Cid was able to do that for you both. Tough! M xx

Mima said...

Tears again, but so glad for you that you got to sleep with your arms around you. I know how gutted Granny was when they moved Grampa to the hospital bed, she could still lie next to him & hold him, but not sleep there. It means a lot.