Wednesday, March 25, 2009

True Grit kind of John Wayne woman

Oh phenomenal March! So much to do, so much to think about doing...grab all the receipts, get the taxes done, keep the house up, go to work...don't forget the chronic pea planting...and the tractor, still in the shed, limping.
And what have I been up to? Why no voice to the blog for a whole week? Well, here goes the saga...the boulder story, the shifting of the sands...

Good old grandma, or young grandma- since she recently exposed a little secret to me- she took a four wheeler ride. Oh that woman! Let's see, my dad is almost 70, his older brother is 70 something so that makes Grandma Mocko (we like to call her- )well, I won't expose her do the math, but don't tell her I led the equation. That makes her a respectable dear lady, but sometimes a bit on the people pleasing side- she was cajoled into riding on the back of a mudding device, says she's awful sore, but didn't feel right saying no. So while she's off doing God knows what...I took my day off to clean up her yard, prune all the bushes, rake all the leaves, clean the house "of a million nick-knacks" and install her new dryer. I didn't actually install it, but I did tell them where to put it and removed doors so they could get through...anyway- you get the picture. While all this hoopla is going on, the neighbors-(and they just don't make fences tall enough, or sound proof enough for these people) took to beating on one another and screaming profanities. The police came and went...go figure. Oh, they did ask me if I heard anything-

"Yeah, I'm pretty sure the soldiers in Iraq heard it too, mister. I've never heard such language coming from a mother to her daughter!"

"Oh no, that's the grandma...."

"Great....anyway, yes it seems the young girl's belongings were thrown out the back door and then she was forced out too, crying and begging."

"That girl is trouble..."

"Excuse me? That girl is in trouble. How could you just leave her there? I don't care what she's done...that's just not right. I'm telling you, the girl was pleading as she was being verbally assaulted. To my ears, she had done nothing to warrant that extreme hurt."

"Did you see any physical assault?"

"Well no, but I heard slapping. And grandma there didn't have any red marks, but the poor kid did. Aren't you going to do anything?"

"We're aware ma'am...goes on all the time there...Have a good day."

Geez, I couldn't believe it, a hayseed like me- see I thought you were suppose to be loving and speak lovingly to your kids. I didn't know that the law turns a blind eye to slapping and horrible, dirty name calling- by a grandma no less!
So anyway- the fun finally subsided, I went back to my work wondering if this is always the toxic environment elders have to put up with. I mean, my sweet old girl loves to sit out in her chair, under the maple shade tree and just be. I'm beginning to wonder when was the last time she wonder she wanted me to take back the cedar glider I got her for Mother's Day. I feel so bad that she has to tolerate that environment...but I feel even worse for that poor girl.

I seethed, told myself to mind my own business- stick to the job at hand. Maybe this was just a really heated argument, maybe things weren't what they seemed- maybe ugly meant love to those folks. As I began the final raking of the final leaves, I heard a truck roar into the drive. The next thing I know- screaming, slapping, more screaming, double teaming- and words of a mother to her child that should never be uttered, no matter, no how. Words that made me cringe, from a woman's standpoint- we don't utter such disrespectul disgraces. Now I'm no prude, I say the big one every now and then...(when fishing, tractor fixing...) damn, and shit sometimes slip past my lips before my brain engages- though sometimes those words are perfectly apt. I did not, could not understand this language- this was hate. I don't speak it. I found myself totally aghast, I mean -the police weren't going to do anything, I couldn't very well knock on the door and say,
"Excuse me sister, why don't you pick on someone your own size? If you're so angry you've got to bring your kid down, how about me? I can take it..." while I dragged her out of the house. Guess who'd they'd lock in jail then?! I was beside myself. And don't think I'm nosy- to each his own, ain't no business of mine...BUT, this was a child, this was abuse, this was completely unacceptable...and I couldn't do a damn thing about it but seethe. And seethe I did, and raked a little harder and teared up for that child. Somewhere between my disbeleif and my anger, I must have said a little prayer...because I found myself doing something really crazy.

All I could think of was how this woman was not speaking any language I could possibly understand, and had I dragged her out of the house, she probably wouldn't have understood my lingo either. But then I thought about singing, loud. So...I did. At the top of my lungs, over the screaming and the raking, into those open windows- I sang my heart out. It felt crazy. It looked crazy, I'm sure...but I didn't know what else to do. The only language everyone understands, every one wants to understand, every one needs-

"All you need is love, bah dah dah dah, All you need is love, bah, dah, dah, dah, All you need is love! Love! Love is all you need...." (and all the in between lyrics, every word.)

I did this for what felt like an hour, over and over- the louder they got, the louder I sang. When I couldn't bear to sing another chorus- I went on with Amazing Grace...again, top of my lungs, though still in tune mind you.

The screaming stopped, but I did not. On and on, I sang. Like a village idiot, only- like I said, in key. I did not stop singing until the last leaf was dispelled. People gathered in the street, I kept singing. Frank, the other neighbor wondered what the hell I was doing. I smiled. And sang.

At one point, I did get a little bit afraid, I mean- I was disturbing the peace, kind of in a way- I wondered if that loud mouthed poor substitute for a mother was going to come out and waylay me. But she didn't. Maybe she heard...maybe she thought...maybe, just maybe- for one moment she understood my language. And I did in the end, understand hers- deep pain, deep fear, possibly deep scars from the same kind of abuse from her family.

Anyway, I was going to tell you all about the boulder and the shifting of the sands...kidney stones. I thought sore back, found out different. I was trying to pass a boulder, excuse me please...while the tiny miniscule sandy stuff shifted out of my kidneys. Needless to say...I'd rather pass a linebacker kid than a kidney stone, matter of fact- I'd rather not ever , no never- go through that again. It hurt. I almost cried. If my Big Fish would have been here, I probably would have. But one to wash away my tears or hold my hand. They did put up a kidney fund for me at work though...that was kind of nice. I couldn't even sit up for two days...and I thought I was pretty tough, I found out I was pretty gritty, but not the True Grit kind of John Wayne woman I always dreamed about being. Nah...I'm just a lousy patient who happens to love the Beatles (especially that song.)

Take care-


Li'l Em said...

Deep calling to deep, on two fronts.

Firstly - it's amazing the level of sh!t disturbing amongst familial relations. It's plumb awful what people do when they lose sight of rational sense - or so I have experienced, anyhow. I also know what it's like to be on the outside, wanting to discipline somebody else's children or worse, correct somebody else's craptacular concept of parenting. This is where I find the act of prayer very essential. I pray that God will do, and more rightly, what I'm not capable of doing. (You know, since I don't have my cape and superpowers with me.)

Secondly - kidneys. Oh, the humanity. Great when they work, bastards when they malfunction. That's all I'm going to say. I hope when you're feeling better and more hydrated you will treat yourself to a whiskey and some violent television. That's all that seems to work when it comes to erasing such experiences from recent memory.

Hang in there kitten!

troutbirder said...

Could you call county social services?

Anonymous said...

The Mathews clan and the Beatles, grandpa's favorite song of all time is Hey Jude. I like it that you sang. If I'm upset I tend to dance it out in the privacy of my own living room. Makes you feel better about everything :)

Love, Rhi

truewonder said...

Meow...always, always trust your cape!
And TB, sorry, I thought everyone could read between my lines. The singing was just the beginning, lets just say, anonymously I am helping that woman. And social services might not be the ticket yet...I've talked to the powers that be, that mom just didn't have any where to turn, no excuse though for the behavior, but- she is being helped.
And Rhi- I never knew Uncle Bob was so durn cool, always thought he was cute though, kind of a horse whispering lady killer. Oh and thanks, don't worry about me, what's a kidney, got two of em right?! LOL

Anonymous said...

Grandpa is a man of many secrets, I'll have to share some of his latest in an email :) And now I feel terrible that I didn't say sorry about your kidneys. If you ever need one, call me to see if I'm a match :) I love you that much. I don't donate blood for fear of needles, but I'd offer you a kidney!!
Love, Rhi

Jane said...

Singing sounds like the best way to handle such foul neighbors. It is unfortunate that such behavior exists......


bam said...

ohhhhhman late to this one all right. i don't know where to begin. first i'll stand and applaud and i'll not sit down, not for the ingenious way you brilliantly fought back with love. and song upon song. made your point. i hope. but then i read that you've birthed kidney stones all on your own. you poor thing. i actually thought i had some of those this week, or something far worse. turned out, i'd just been sitting crooked in the back seat of a car, for days on end. ooops. anyway, that story woulda had me streaming tears and seething too. when hate up and walks in our faces, some of us can't stand to go on breathing as if the world isn't convulsing right in front of our hearts.....lord help that girl. bless her, and you, and thse now departed stones........