Monday, November 1, 2010

Fading Memories

My mother Maria was born in Tallinn, Estonia, in 1920. She left us on Nov.1st, 2001. She will be a dancer in her next life. That's what she wanted to be. And I hope she will be happier than in this life. She lost two sons at an early age in 1945. Her 3rd child was a dissappointment, female and crazy (me). Maria was full of temperament in moments she escaped her traumatic depression. Then she would play swing hits of the thirties on our piano, a cigarette between her lips, her head bent slightly backwards, as smoking piano-players do. She was a widow when I took the second picture, but ready to go for another adventure, a relationship with a prominent man from the Bavarian culture scene. After his death, she lived in my brother's house near Hamburg.
It was not until her last years that I understood her love which was hidden behind criticism. Her "hello" was: "oh, you put on weight again." I, nevertheless, told her a story: I was about 6 or 7 years old and had a high fever. From my bed, I could see my desk which was covered with a bright red table cover. I loved this plastic cover, it allowed me to do wild watercolor experiments without messing up the place. Now, the red was unbearable. I asked my mother to take it out of sight, and she, without a word, removed it. 45 years later I thanked her for being so understanding.
At that time she showed signs that her life energy was going down fast. I realized that she would be going soon, and it choked me.
We never stopped missing her.

7 comments:

Chris Gray said...

..maybe you can dance together...

...next time...

jude said...

i see some resemblance

SweetbriarStudio (Christie) said...

How touching. Your writing of her (and in general) is so descriptive, I can see her in my mind's eye. It wasn't until soon before my dad died that I learned some things about his past that made me so much more forgiving for his 'weaknesses' in life. How wonderful that your memories are focused more on when she was at her best.

Michele said...

Eva, I miss my mother too, and wish that our relationship could have been one of uncomplicated, unconditional love, but it was not. I never felt I won her approval, and I so wanted it. She had good friends, and I am disconsolate that I couldn't know her the way that they did. Sad, and nothing to be done, except to try to do better with my own children. Michele

Yael said...

Oh yes, all that issues with our parents - it seems so many of us have them and I always wonder if I am doing better with my own children?

Yes very touching your story of your mother! Really Eva-Maria - and I think you are very brave in dealing with the memories and finding the good in them!
Your mother was a very beautiful woman, she reminds me of someone, still didn't figure out of whom!
I read also her history - I cannot imagine having to deal with what she had to deal... I think I would have liked to know her -

Dear hugs to you!

Titus said...

Just thank you, Eva.

Martha Marshall said...

What a beautiful story about your mother. We seem to end up remembering the good parts. I hope my kids will.