September 2, 2020

God damn. Why is it so fucking sad?
Today is the day our family comes to visit for the weekend. My sister and her partner arrived today, her sons come on Friday.
We’ve been busy the last few weeks getting ready first for the electricians to come do a near overhaul on the electrical system in the house, foo for our company to come. Plus there’s daily life. So I’ve been busy. It wasn’t until around 8 p.m. that I got around to cleaning the bathroom.
I’m on the floor wiping down the baseboards and mom peeks her head in.
“Are we the only ones here?”
“Yep, just us.”
“Where is everybody?”
“They’re not here yet. They’re coming in late tonight. We might not even see them tonight.”
“No, not my family, I mean everybody else. All the people we’ve had in and out of here all day.”
There’s just been her, me, and the dog. As always. Always just her, me, and the dog.
Almost two hours later my sister texted to say they were just getting on the bypass that would drop them practically at our door so were on their way over. That’s when I learned that mom doesn’t remember my sister, her daughter.
“She’s your sister? Really? Isn’t that something.” I almost cried.
Why do I get so choked up at moments like this? I know better. I know she’s confused at night. I know she forgets people sometimes. Why can’t I deal with it?
They didn’t stay long. They’d been in the car for something like 20 hours so were tired, naturally, and soon enough left to get to their Airbnb. After that mom was confused.
One particularly telling sentence: “I did not recognize that woman who was here. I would not have known she was (name redacted).”
Granted, we were all wearing masks. They may be family but we haven’t seen them in two years, and they haven’t quarantined for two weeks, nor have we. We’re not exactly in each other’s circle of germs. That’s the excuse I gave mom– she looked different because she was wearing a mask.
There was a lot more discussion. We went round and round about who was who in my sister’s family and when they arrive. I kept steering her attention to the baseball game, and when that was over shuffled her off to bed in a hurry. She’ll recognize my sister and her partner in the morning. It won’t be so confusing for her then. Meanwhile, I’m fucking sad.

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