Does anyone ever truly have full control over ones life? There are days when I just feel like I am dangling on strings and everyone but me is able to pull on them. Let me start by saying that I am a grown woman that sometimes finds herself trapped in the world of a child.
It seems that I have certainly had grown up experiences in my life, but this is clearly not one of them. I knew from the outset that living in Italy, a place where I don’t know the language, would nonetheless put me at a slight disadvantage within my new world of choice. I also embraced the idea that living with my mother in law couldn’t be all that bad especially considering that we had no common language, only our devout love for her son.
For the most part I have managed to convince myself that I have not inherited the traditional Italian mother in law. Now, however, I am not so sure. Was I just ignoring reality or is she truly not as bad the rest of them?
Every time I go away, albeit for a long weekend or overseas, Mama always takes on a new project. I have pleaded my cause on many occassions to my husband but the message is clearly getting lost in translation.
As I have stated before, Mama has always been a bit of a wildcard and luckily for my cat Stelle, I was able to plead and beg that she NOT shave my cat while I am gone. So, all I can go on now is that she has kept her word on this and left the poor cat alone. Part of me wonders though if I should not start behaving like a distraught parent whose child has been kidnapped for ransom and demand up to date digital photos of her to prove that she is still alive and has a full body of hair! (Note to self: teach mama how to use Skype upon return)
I’m still waiting for confirmation, but it looks like I may be extending my stay on board for a few more weeks. Today we called Mama to inform her of this news and she was more exciteable than usual on the phone. She was rattling on in Italian to me and I will admit that I am sure my head spun right around as I was trying to decipher her words at rapid speed. You see I have been in North America now for 2 months and a bit out of practice!
She kept saying that she has done something once again to the apartment for me that will apparently make me very happy. OH NO! Not again! The first time I dared a long weekend she rearranged my closets and it took me weeks to find any of my clothes! (Remember the fact that I had finally unpacked after living out of a suitcase for 6 years so this was a bit tramatic for me)
The next time I went overseas she knocked out a wall, put up another wall and installed a new bedroom door for herself, virtually cutting me off from the laundry machines unless I choose to wander into her bedroom to get to them.
The only requests I have ever made is that she A) leave my stuff where it is and B) please feed my cat and give her some love while I am gone. And C) If she still feels like renovating – please install a gas water heater (my husband gave her a blank cheque for this job 2 years ago and she still hasn’t done it) so I don’t have to plan a bath 4 hours ahead of time!
So as my anxiety and blood pressure rise I really have no idea what I will be coming home to this time around. I momentarily lost my cool and released some of my frustration on my friend Elora and then on my poor husband.
But, after many hours of contemplation I have come to the conclusion that it’s really not all that important. After all, Mama has good intentions and only believes that her little home improvement projects are for the greater good of all. Even if in my mind they are a bit over the top and unnecessary and it leaves me feeling powerless over my own life, it gives her a purpose and leaves me to get on with more important things like saving the world…I just haven’t figured out how yet, but I’m working on it I assure you.
In the meantime she still makes the best lasagna in the world and she actually seems to like me! What more could a girl ask for?