I picked her hand up a few more times over the next two hours while we waited for another hospice worker to come over and fill out the final paperwork and then for the men from the funeral home to take her away. I did this less for the sake of holding it than to make sure she still had no pulse.
She must have found us appalling. A week or so before my mother died, my brother and I started packing up the apartment right in front of her. I know this sounds grotesque, but we were haemorrhaging money and had to do whatever we could to stem the flow. It was late December and her lease was up on the first of the new year. Vera was a professional end-of-life home healthcare aide, referred to us by the hospice.
She was originally from Trinidad and spent a lot of time listening to Christmas music on headphones. My mother died the day after Christmas. She was 67 years old. But in January , after months of complaining of pain in her side and being told by her doctor it was probably a pulled muscle, she was found to have gallbladder cancer.
This sounds like the kind of thing you could easily cure by just removing the gallbladder, which everyone knows is a nonessential organ, but it turns out the disease is not only extremely rare but barely treatable. My grandmother was tyrannical in her childishness. She was stubborn, self-centred, and often seemingly wilfully illogical. Not in the sense of failing to provide food and shelter but in the sense that is knowable only to the neglectee, and even then maybe never entirely.
In the outside world, she won piano competitions and twirled the baton, but inside the house she offered nothing more than an occasional mumble. I think the idea was that her mother was so unwilling to listen to her that she was no longer going to waste her breath.
The Writing Theory
But as I grew older and my grandfather died and my mother lost what little buffer had once stood between her and her adversary, the more I came to see the pathology that swarmed around my grandmother like bees. She spoke in a permanent whine, sometimes practically in baby talk.
It would require travel to southern Illinois, a ragged, rural place out of which my grandmother had seldom set foot and from which my mother, despite having left at 23, never felt she could totally escape. My father, though sort of in the picture in that he also lived in Manhattan and was still married to my mother, was not in any picture that would have required him to make this trip. The rest of us, though, would go the following month, when my brother could request a few days off and after my mother was recovered from her surgery and had gotten in a round or two of chemotherapy.
It would turn out to be the last trip she ever took. In truth, the actor had dropped out before she began working there, but my brother and I nodded and went along with it. There was a period of at least 15 years, from approximately age 18 to age 34, when every interaction I had with my mother entailed some attempt on my part to cut through what I perceived as a set of intolerable affectations.
Not that she actually was or did any of these things. It was more that she always felt to me like an outline of a person, a pen-and-ink drawing with nothing coloured in.
Sometimes I got the feeling she sort of knew this about herself but was powerless to do anything about it. She wanted to be a connoisseur of things, an expert. She wanted to believe she was an intellectual. Once, among a group of semi-strangers, I heard her refer to herself as an academic. Later, when I asked her about it, she told me she appreciated college towns and academic-type people and therefore was one herself.
What was my problem? For starters, her need for praise was insatiable. And around the time of her emancipation from her old self, when she moved out of the house and seemingly took up permanent residence in the high school theatre, that need redoubled. We never gave her any credit, she said.
That she was completely right about all of this only added to my rage. She just wanted it too badly. If you asked me what my central grievance with my mother was, I would tell you that I had a hard time not seeing her as a fraud. I would tell you that her transformation, at around the age of 45, from a slightly frumpy, slightly depressed, slightly angry but mostly unassuming wife, mother, and occasional private piano teacher into a flashy, imperious, hyperbolic theatre person had ignited in her a phoniness that I was allergic to on every level.
I might throw in the fact that she was deeply concerned with what kind of person I was in high school because it would surely be a direct reflection of the kind of person she was. Meanwhile she copied my clothes, my hair, my taste in jewellery, so much so that I started borrowing her things they were exaggerated versions of my things: skirts that were a little too short, blazers with massive shoulder pads, dangling, art deco—inspired earrings because it seemed easier than trying to pull together my own stuff.
In the years to come, my mother would become the go-to teacher for the sexually confused and the suddenly pregnant. She found it embarrassing that I had a boyfriend. She liked when I waited for her at the end of the day so she could drive me home, even perhaps especially if it meant my having to pace around the theatre while she finished up her business. Kids whose parents are teachers in their schools are members of a special club. They have to build invisible fences. They have to learn to appear to take it in earnest when their classmates tell them how cool the parent is.
I never considered myself a member of that club. In those years, my mother seemed to have just slipped through the door as I walked through it on the first day of school. It was never entirely clear what she was doing.
Working Mothers: How Much Working, How Much Mothers, And Where Is The Womanhood?
She had no theatre experience; her background was in music. It made sense that she was volunteering as a piano accompanist, playing in the pit orchestra, coaching singers. It made less sense that she always seemed to be there even after the musicians went home. Hanging out with the set builders, feigning disapproval when kids banged out pop songs instead of the assigned show tunes on the piano, giving more and more orders until everyone just assumed she was in charge. Substance was one of her all-time most used words; in both of her incarnations she used it liberally, though her powers of appraisal were questionable.
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She believed Barbara Walters showed substance on The View when she hushed the other ladies up and spoke her mind. There was no more clothes sharing after I left for college. During that time my mother moved out of our house and into her own place and I came home as infrequently as possible, staying with my father when I did. Her career in full throttle, she was usually too busy for family time anyway. She was out late rehearsing summer stock productions of Sweeney Todd.
Long and Short Essay on Mother’s Love in English for Children and Students
Still, my assignment from there on out was clear. For the rest of her life, what I was supposed to do was celebrate how little my mother resembled her own mother. I was supposed to accept that her old personality had been nothing more than a manifestation of various sources of oppression her mother, her husband, the legacy of s southern Illinois and that what we had on our hands now the fan club of gay men, the dramatic hand gestures, the unsettling way she seemed to have taken on the preening, clucking qualities of a teenage girl, almost as if to make up for skipping over that phase the first time was the real deal.
Let it be with the courses which I took or who I made friends with, everything had been shaped and decided by people around me and not me. Even though most of the decisions were made in. The most meaninful experience of my life words - 4 pages For many people the most meaningful experience of their lives is well defined, clear and concise. One given occurrence, at a given time and in a clear setting can change the meaning of life for a person.
All about my mother: ‘It’s amazing what the living expect of the dying'
One late night I sat down in a quiet room in my house to think about my personal experiences, the only sound in the house came from an old mantel clock, which I like to keep wound and on time. I very much enjoy listening to the rhythmic tic-tock. Furthermore, Issac Deitz is a major influence in my life several reasons. His lifestyle is a major inspiration to me because Deitz appreciates the time he has by not wasting a bit of.
After finding out that I couldn't play sports until I was in seventh grade I got kind of mad but waited it out and when the first day of school started so did my volleyball try outs. I came to school not excited, for the first time in my life, to being going back to school but because I was going to be on the volleyball team. I mean I hadn't made the team but I wasn't thinking.
My father is the most valuable person in my life words - 3 pages My father is the most valuable person in my life. He is the most courageous, religious, and selfless person I have ever known. My father had passed away when I was fifteen years old. He had died of T-cell lymphoma. He was an understanding father and a loving husband. He was a big influence in my life.
All though, he is no longer with me, but he will always have a place in my heart. All he had left behind for me are the precious memories and. Someone important in my life words - 3 pages to tell. Out of all the people I have met in my lifetime, My Great Grandma Rickel is the person that I admire the most and will continue to be for some great time if not forever. There are many more qualities that makes her the outstanding person she is and I hope everyone has someone in their life like my grandma.
I love her so much for being who she is! I hope that all of you enjoyed learning the skills we will need to attain our desired goals. My life has been impacted greatly by this experience, and I will work to cast. I was really horrified when I was chosen as one of the participants. For the next few days, I searched model essay books for a suitable topic to speak on for I could never had written my own speech even if my life depended on it.
This vision utterly obscures the fraught evolutionary journey that delivers the babe in arms, and the screaming, nerve-jangled moments that surround it. Increasingly, pregnancy has come under scrutiny for its profound paradoxes. It is at once essential and unrivalled in its perils. As it engenders life, it also results in staggeringly high rates of death and disease. Scientists are starting to look to microchimerism for clues as to why pregnancy is both life-giving and a singular source of risk.
On one side of the spectrum, foetal microchimeric cells have been implicated in autoimmune disorders, certain cancers and pre-eclampsia , a potentially fatal condition characterised by high blood-pressure during the latter half of pregnancy. But another body of research has found that foetal cells can protect the mother. They appear to congregate at wound sites, including Caesarean incisions, to speed up healing.
They participate in angiogenesis, the creation of new blood vessels. Although foetal cells might contribute to certain autoimmune disorders, they could also benefit women with rheumatoid arthritis. While doctors have been aware since the early 20th century that arthritic pain tends to recede with pregnancy, Nelson and her colleagues wondered whether there is an immunological reason why it tends to re-emerge later. They found that higher levels of microchimerism were associated with a lessening of symptoms, and that giving birth offered a long-term protective benefit.
Foetal microchimeric cells might even extend longevity and help to explain why women tend to live longer than men. Although the researchers looked only at male microchimerism because there are no easy targets to distinguish cells between mothers and daughters , they maintain that female foetuses would have the same impact on longevity: 85 per cent of women who possessed these cells lived to age 80, as compared with 67 per cent who did not.
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While there are no clear answers to explain how microchimeric cells might lead to longer lifespans, researchers speculate that it could be associated with greater immune surveillance and improved repair of damaged tissue. However, the jury is out as to whether the presence of foetal cells in tissues is a sign of repair or of developing disease.
To Kirby Johnson, professor of paediatrics at Tufts University in Boston, the evidence favours a protective role. Like the Nelson lab, Johnson and his colleagues were also investigating autoimmune diseases. However, they reasoned that, if foetal cells were causing disease, then they should be found in greater concentration in affected tissue. While that finding was revelatory for Johnson, the bigger moment came during a study in on the role of microchimeric cells in disease of the thyroid, a hormone-secreting gland located in the neck. Not long after, a mother with severe hepatitis C and a history of intravenous drug use checked into a Boston clinic.
Hepatitis C is a disease of the liver, and when Johnson and colleagues looked at a biopsy of the organ, they found a high number of male cells. Moreover, these cells appeared to be functioning as healthy liver tissue. Although the woman declined further treatment for her disease, she participated in tests confirming that the cells had indeed come from her son. When she came in at a later date to provide blood samples, Johnson and his research team were astounded to discover that she was free of the disease. F or hundreds of millions of years, microchimerism has been a part of mammalian reproduction.
From a survival-of-the-fittest perspective, it would make sense that microchimerism might preserve the health of mother and child, helping her survive childbirth and beyond as her offspring make their slow way to independence. However, current evolutionary thinking suggests that the interests of parents and their kin might be at odds — in the womb, as well as in the world. Because mother and the foetus are not genetically identical, they might be engaged in a tug of war over resources. The geneticist Amy Boddy of the University of California, Santa Barbara, says that microchimerism presents a paradoxical picture of conflict and cooperation, and foetal cells might well play a host of roles, from helpful partners to hostile adversaries.
These tensions are thought to originate with the creation of the placenta. Trophoblasts, cells that form the outer layer of the early embryo, attach and burrow into the uterine lining, establishing pregnancy and initiating the process of directing blood, oxygen and nutrients from the mother to the developing foetus. Conflict ensues: on the one hand, mothers and babies have a shared investment in mutual survival; on the other, the foetus is a demanding, voracious presence, actively trying to draw resources to itself, while the mother places limits on just how much she is willing to give.
In other words, on an unconscious level, the mother might be engaged in a struggle with the foetus over just how much she can provide without harm to herself. The idea that the womb might not be an enclave of rosy communion took hold in the work of the American evolutionary biologist Robert Trivers. An original and often unorthodox figure, Trivers was the creator of seminal theories — such as parental investment, altruism and parent-offspring conflict — that are now mainstays of evolutionary psychology.