“Dead I am the light
Dig into the skin
Knuckle crack the bone
Twenty-one to win
Dead I am the dog
Hound of hell you cry
Devil on your back
I can never die”
“Dragula” Rob Zombie
My mom loves all holidays but Halloween is her favorite. She goes full throttle. I remember one year when I was in my 20’s. She did a great one. It was the first time she dressed. She went all out. She was a witch, the tall pointy hat, the long black dress, She painted her face green and had a long green, crooked glue on nose that matched. Her intentions were good but another thing she loved about Holidays was buying a handle of Smirnoff, a handle of Kahlua, a gallon of milk and draining White Russians like they were going out of style. She could drain half of each bottle. That was quite a mean feat considering she is only 5 feet tall, 120lbs.
By the end of the night her rubber nose was hanging to the side and she was getting loud and dramatic scaring the kids who came to the door. “Oh my God! Who are you supposed to be! Oh, I love it! Exclaiming with extremely slurred speech. The rest of us kids sat in the living room smoking dope to cope. Like I said she meant well but I was embarrassed and hated her for it.
When she finally quit drinking, I still had a lot of resentment and blamed her for all my problems in life. Sure, when I was a kid there was a lot of love, but there was also a lot of neglect and chaos and unpredictablity. You never knew who someone would be depending on which substance(s) they consumed. My mom and my aunts were poor single parents with two kids each. Back then, guys didn’t have to pay child support if they didn’t feel like it. They often shared apartments so I grew up with my cousins. As soon as we were tall enough to reach the stovetop, we learned how to cook. Because if you couldn’t, you might go hungry some days.
Another resentment I had was after she quit, she acted like none of it happened. Like she was a nun all her life. She acts shocked when I say, “Fuck”. I learned all the words, and crude jokes and actions from her by the time I was by the time I was four.
I understand now, kids having kids, The oldest brother suiciding after coming home from two voluntary tours of Vietnam. He shot himself in his bedroom with his service rifle. They didn’t find him for three days because it wasn’t unusual for him to disappear. He was crazy like me. My cousin and I were up the hill behind the house one summer and found an issue of Time magazine; the one with the Beatles on the cover. He he had the shot their eyes out with a .22. Eight shots, eight hits with pinpoint accuracy.
I forgive her now and we get along great for years. Now I text her every morning; all we talk about is did you have coffee yet, breakfast? She went for a walk in the park got 3,274 steps. Whatever. It feels good. She knows if I text her later in the day asking what are you doing right now. I don’t care what she is doing, I”m not doing to well. But she will tell me exactly what she is doing. Laundry, watching the remake of the “Dynasty” series on Netflix. (Who knew)
This morning I texted her about Halloween. When she moved in with my brother about 8 years ago, she had a place to do Halloween. She built her own effigy of a stuffed pair of pants and a scary mask on his face and propped him up in a chair on the porch with the cobwebs etc. She doesn’t wear a costume anymore but she she goes to the store and buys all the candy and spends all day putting one piece of each kind in cellophane bags, tying them with ribbon.
They moved to a mobile home community this year. I asked her what her costume would be. She said she was going to dress as an old woman. So you aren’t wearing a costume? LOL, nope. I asked if they allowed trick or treat where they live now. she said only residents. I asked if she was gonna do her thing? She said no. I told her the story I read on Therapy Bits this morning about her being poor when she was a kid she had to wear a trash bag as a costume. I left a comment, saying, me too, I wrapped an ace bandage around my head one year and I was “The Mummy” That was pretty funny.