Yesterday’s blog about Mom excavating the back yard reminded me that she use to say she always wanted to be an archaeologist. She said it enough that I believed her. The fact that traveling outside a 25 mile radius of home was a major undertaking for the entire family didn’t click in my brain – I loved to travel, her mother and grandmother loved to travel. She revealed the truth to me only when I was getting ready to give her a National Geographic “genuine dig” trip – she said that as her way of expressing her desire for peace and quiet in a chaotic household with eight children.
Well, knock me over with a feather…I about fell into the invisible pink elephant that lives in the house of secrets that everyone trips and climbs over, squeezes under, fights for, yet refuses to acknowledge. A truth. In a Catholic home. I am almost speechless. Bless me father for I have… told the truth!
I am not hurt by the truth. I like honest and candor. What bothered me was that facade of a false dream. Who was/is my mom? What did she want for herself? There had to be more than raising kids. Her mom and her grandmother both told me that… Granted, I was half the age I am now, and childless, but who was she?
Now I’m a bit older than she was when I tried to give her what I thought would be the trip of her dreams. And I found out it was not her dream, and I could not give it to her. Maybe she was just trying to survive the invisible pink elephant that never left her house. And she tethered herself to the house, the home.
I am my mother’s daughter. But a year ago I severed my tether, climbed over my pink elephant and left it. Well, I took a couple pink elephant babies – they were kinda cute – and someone has to tend to them. But I insist they be seen – they are not invisible in my home. And when they get rowdy and loud, I dream of travel to far away lands, not to dig up the old ancient bones, but to walk into the land of living, and yes, sometimes freshly dead, to ask the questions, to collect the samples, to survey the environment, to gather the evidence, the data, and if I’m really lucky, do the statistical analysis… (yes, it is a dream.) But I have been there before and I know I will go back again.
Categories: Lions, Tigers and Catholics, Oh my.