Monday, July 09, 2007

About Lisa

I've settled down a bit emotionally and mentally since my friend I mentioned a few posts ago died. She died Tuesday of last week while we were in the mountains. I thought this would probably happen since I knew she was being transferred into hospice care right before we left town. I didn't go see her there, I'm ashamed to say. We were busy trying to get things done before the trip and I knew that she had many closer friends staying with her around the clock. To be completely honest, though, I mostly didn't know what to say to her and knew that she probably wouldn't hear or understand me. I still don't know if that's practicality or cowardice.

I went to her memorial service Saturday evening at the Forest Theater in Chapel Hill. There were several dozen people there, nearly all of them friends who had known her a good long time, too. Several of them got up to talk about Lisa--her loud screeching laughter, her ridiculously complicated ordering habits when out to eat at restaurants, what a stellar cook she was herself, her political activism and unflinching outspokenness about all that she felt was wrong with the world or wrong with YOU, for that matter. Some people cried, but mostly people laughed because there really was a lot you could laugh at when talking about Lisa.

Later at home, I was in a bit of a funk as I thought about one of the last conversations we had together, when she asked me what I was planning to do after I was "done with this whole mom thing." I was kinda pissed at the question then and didn't give a straight answer, in part because I'm not going to be "done" with being a mom for quite some time. But I'm wondering now just who would show up at my funeral if I were to die tomorrow and what stories they would tell. My life is so contained and so very unconcerned with anyone else but my own family and few good friends. I'm not out there advocating for poor women or gays or Latino immigrants like she was. I'm not publishing political 'zines or losing my job standing up for some righteous principle. I don't take other people's recycling home with me if I know they're not going to be recycling. I'm just keeping the house clean, keeping the kids fed, doing a little gardening, a little sewing--a small, private, contained life.

Just another bout of SAHM angst, I guess, not helped by the fact that there's an actual friend's death setting it off. Maybe it'll pass. In the meantime, I'm going to be more diligent about recycling, try to buy much more local produce, support more local businesses, get the damn compost pile started finally...

3 comments:

Beth said...

oh sugar mama....you are doing far more for the world than some of those people, by raising wonderful girls that will go out into the world and do something!!! Some people give SAHM a hard time, but believe me, it is THE hardest job on earth....you have these tiny, fragile lives in your hands, and how they turn out depends largely on YOU. You take that job seriously and do a damn good job of it too. don't sell yourself short.

I would totally come to your funeral!

Joan said...

Sorry you are going through all that. I've been full time working mom, SAHM, and now part time working. Last month, I was striking up a nice conversation with a mom while we were waiting for our kids to get back from a field trip. She was all friendly until she learned I worked. She acted like she felt sorry for me then made some excuse about having to make a phone call and left. Maybe it was my imagination. My point is no matter what my employment situation is, there always seemed to be people judging me. Try to stay proud of whatever you are doing.

DSB said...

I am so sorry for the loss of your friend.

But please, never feel like you aren't doing enough. Raising the next generation isn't easy, and different people make a difference in their own different ways.