Olivia de Havilland
Today is my mom’s birthday–and just as my dad is, she is alive and well! I spoke with her a moment ago. The weather in Mobile is sunny (it’s stormy here in Pensacola)–and she is picking blueberries from one of the four very high-yielding blueberry bushes she and my dad planted in their backyard. Whenever I go to Mobile, I am greeted with blueberry pancakes, just one of her specialties! My mom has always been a wonderful cook–I wish to God I would have appreciated the delicious, healthy meals she prepared for me as a child!
My mom is a retired CRRN (certified rehabilitation registered nurse). She was in her 40’s when she attended college, then nursing school–inspired by my oldest sister, Cathy, who’d done the same. She was the oldest student in her class, and graduated with top honors! She then worked at Mobile Infirmary (where I was born), and later at a rehabilitation center, primarily with chronic-pain sufferers.
My mom has always been the spiritual head of my family, she had me baptized in the United Methodist Church as an infant. My renunctiation of organized religion (including Christianity) is thus very painful for her. I have explained to her, many times, that I believe in the same God she does–just see God in a different way. Yet this is no consolation for her. She continues to try to get me back into the fold–to believe that Jesus was the incarnation of the Creator. But as I’ve mentioned in a previous post–we have no control over our beliefs. Still, I no longer resent her mild proselytism–for I know she fears for me, and this indicates her love for me. In fact, I accept her Christianity–along with my dad, she is very active in volunteer work through her church, and helps alot of people!
My mom has also always been very helpful regarding my mental illness. Because my mental illness is hereditary, both of my parents (and my sisters, to some degree) are mentally ill, particularly with obsessive-compulsive disorder. They deny theirs, and I no longer bother trying to convince them of it. But while so many mothers would deny their children’s mental illness, my mom accepts mine. Along with my dad, she has been an active member of NAMI (the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill), since I was diagnosed in the late 1980’s. And she gives me lots of advice, and tries her best to understand my illness better–reading and listening to as much as she can on the subject. In fact, she sometimes gets a little carried away with it, presuming to know my diagnoses better than I do. But as with the religious issue, I have come to accept this. Because, again, she cares about me– she loves me in her own way!
And as with my dad, sometimes I dislike my mom. But I always love her. For she is a part of me too!
I watch many programs on television, on different channels (though I record them so I can watch them when I feel like it, and keep the ones I enjoy most). But my base-channel, the channel which I keep my television tuned on regularly, is WUWF–a public-access channel operated by the University of West Florida. WUWF TV has alot of excellent programming I can’t see anywhere else. But my favorite is Classic Arts Showcase. It’s like MTV or VH1 used to be (before most of their programming turned to reality shows)–continuous music videos! And over the years, I’ve seen and heard more hot female vocalists than I can keep up with–vocalists such as these:
Anna Maria Martinez, soprano
Andrea Rost, soprano
Angela Gheorghiu, soprano
Cecilia Bartoli, mezzo-soprano
Charlotte Church, soprano
Dawn Upshaw, soprano
Dorothea Roschmann, soprano
Jennifer Larmore, mezzo-soprano
Kathleen Battle, soprano
Lesley Garrett, soprano
Martina Serafin, soprano
Natalia Ushakova, soprano
Nino Machaidze, soprano
Sumi Jo, soprano
Nuccia Focile, soprano
Renee Fleming, soprano
Kiri Te Kanawa, soprano
My niece-in-law, Jessica, has just given birth to my third great-niece, Madelyn Emily! I am especially proud of Jessica and Chris this time–they’ve been struggling greatly, having three children already (Cassidy, Gabe, and Olivia), yet have managed to keep it together so well!
As with Cassidy, Gabe, and Olivia: May the Creator provide for all of Madelyn’s needs, whatever they are. May the Creator deliver her from all evil (trouble), in whatever form. And may the Creator continue to bless this beautiful family!