It’s not what I expected, Mom being home. She spends all day in the recliner. All night too because she can prop the leg up that way. I expected her to be zoned out on pain killers. But all she pops is Ibuprofen and antacids and she knits. Yes, my mom has become a knitting fiend. That explains all the random afghans all over the house. I don’t tell her I half melted one at the laundromat. She’s not up and about so she won’t find it for awhile.
“What’re you looking at?” she says.
I’ve been staring at her, not realizing it. “Just didn’t know you were the crafty type.”
“I’m not. You know that. Not crafty at all. Haven’t you noticed all I can make is blankets and I’m the last one to know what size and shape. Sit and talk with me,” she says pointing to the couch.
I was going to take Roady for a walk and maybe figure out what we’ve got around to make dinner. She’s sitting there, immobile, the folding snack table next to her chair loaded with a huge plastic insulated cup of coffee, a bag of Doritos, and Hershey’s kisses. The air in the small living room is stifling. She doesn’t want the windows open because she gets cold and then can’t close them. It’s over sixty outside in the morning, summer time in my book. I sit down.
“Knitting?” The needles clink together. There’s a strand of yarn coming up out of basket on the floor.
“It all started when I bought a big bag of yarn at a garage sale. They told me to keep busy, especially my hands so it occurred to me that I could learn to knit.”
“Who told you?”
“Rehab,” she says. “You know I went through a whole program when I got pregnant with Junior.”
“You were knitting then? I don’t remember that.”
“I didn’t and I didn’t quit pills either.” She gives me a straight on look. “I’m sorry. I know I promised but I didn’t count on having babies and a husband.”
I’m stunned. Where was I when she was using? Out with Linda, being a teenager, oblivious?
“But,” Mom says. “By the time I was pregnant with Liam, my doctor was on to me and she scared me half to death saying at my age with my blood pressure I could miscarry at any moment if I kept doing what I was doing. So I started rehab again and I started knitting.”
“What about now?”
“You see me knitting.”
“But the accident. You were high.”
She puts her knitting down in her lap. “It wasn’t pills,” she says. She won’t meet eyes now and anyway I won’t look at her. “It was just a joint, okay?”
“Okay?” I raise my voice. “You’re kidding right?”
She lowers her head and starts to cry. “It’s not addictive you know.”
“Really? Cause I’m pretty sure you would be smoking right now if you had any.”
“Dammit Tyler if there were ever a time I should be smoking, eating, drinking hash it would be now. I’m in pain.”
I get up from the couch. “Keep telling yourself it’s okay. Just don’t ask Bobby’s fiancé if she’s okay with one of the drivers in the accident just being high on marijuana.” I walk to the door then look back. “And don’t ask me either.”
Binge READ Episodes 1- 15 by choosing the category- “Roady Series” – Find it in the drop down “menu” at the header of this blog.
————————————————————————————————-This post is fiction based on the back story of a supporting character in a novel in process by Clare Graith. See ClareGraith.com for more info about the author.