Sunday, February 4, 2007

My Mother's Stroke

I got the news at work today, right before my first class. Just before classes started at 7:30 am, I jumped on the computer real quick, to make a quick check of my e-mail.

The message that caught my eye was one from my sister out in Colorado. In the subject line was the word "Mom". I didn't get a good feeling about it, so it was the first message I read.

My Mother had a stroke. Not a major one, but serious enough. Apparently, this is not the first time she has had one, either. They did an MRI, and found that she has been having mini strokes for years. This was just the most serious one.

From what my sister says, she is OK.

The thing was, I was OK about it, too. I went and taught my classes. I didn't give it a second thought. I didn't tell anyone until Mr. Wong was going to drive me home. Usually what I will do is tell someone about my latest tragedy, and play up the sympathy angle. Not this time. I purposely didn't want to have people making a big deal out of it, because it wasn't such a big deal to myself.

It was as if it wasn't my Mom who had the stroke, but some stranger's mother somewhere on the other side of the world. I guess in a way, that's what she is. She has been more of a mother to others than she has to me.

At the best of times, she has been more like an older sister. She would always ask me for advice and confide in me, even when I was very young. Oftentimes I was the one making the drcisions for the family, not her. It was like- "Who is supposed to be the parent here?" At the worst of times, in the distant past, she was a personal demon sent to frustrate and destroy me, and ruin my life. At no time has she really seemed like a mother, even now when she has been supportive and a postive influence in my life.

So it bothers me that I don't feel more. It bothers me that my wife and others are more concerned about her than I am. And it bothers me that this bothers me more than her stroke.