Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Finished packing...

Well, I finished packing and am disappointed. I couldn't fit everything into one suitcase. I suppose I could have fit everything had I REALLY tried (for four more hours) into the biggest one, but I gave up and settled for two. It won't be so bad once I am in the US or even back in Japan, where I can send one bag by takyubin to my house. But the trip to the airport tomorrow is going to make me a disheveled, apologetic, palm-calloused foreign chick who looks like she is moving back to the U.S., not just visiting! Thank god I have my book!

My big suitcase is falling apart. However, I can't seem to let it go. It was my mother's suitcase, back when she was mobile and galavanting around to see her dear children and even dearer grandkids. I have left on the red holiday bows she attached. "Someone might take my bag, mistaking it for their own. So what if it is July!" 

I find sentiment in lots of things recently. I think my Mom's condition is driving home that you never know when your time is up. Then again, it isn't like she has cancer, so I don't feel the need to have "the talk" about what life has meant with her in it, but then again, maybe I shouldn't wait until she is definitively terminal. MS is such a confusing disease because she is still young, but much like we are young when we are pre-ambulatory. She doesn't really have memories she can articulate, much like a 2 year old. She can't walk, much like an 8 month old. And she, well, you get the picture. 

Thankfully though, like a 1 month old, she can laugh. My friend, who is a new mother, was explaining that her baby started to laugh just when she thought she was going to do something drastic. It made me wonder if those babies who learned to laugh earlier stood a better chance of surviving. Maybe the giggling babe would break its Mama's "new mom end-of-the-first-month" crazy spell, lessening the chance of being left under a bush or floated down a river. 

In modern times, I think of trash compactors. When I was 16, Lexi, my niece, was born. I stayed up really late with friends the night before I was to baby sit Ms. Lex. She cried the whole time. Being sleep deprived and hopeless, I resorted to just cradling her and walking around our house. My mouth was agape, and my eyes were half slits, not whole slits, but half. My head was hanging back and I may have even been moaning a little, like a kid impatiently waiting for Mom to stop talking to the lady with the hideous sweater at the bank.  My Mom came home after a few hours, and all I could say was, "Mommy, I really understand why some mother's put their babies in trash compactors." I have always said Lexi was my greatest form of birth control.

I'll remind Mom of that story. She will likely laugh, though I am not sure if it will be like her hearing the story for the first time or if it will jog a memory. Either way, she will laugh; that is all I want for Christmas. Well, that and for my family to appreciate what  I am about to go through tomorrow to get their presents home!

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