“Beth is my only living brother,” my mom told her friend Mel a few weeks ago. She later forgot that she said this. When I asked her about it, she started to laugh.
My mom is starting to lose track of me. She hasn’t forgotten that I’m someone who loves her, that I’m family. But she is obviously starting to forget that I’m her daughter. Or maybe that there is a difference between daughter and sibling, child and parent.
Sometimes, well into a long telephone conversation, she’ll forget who she’s talking to.
“Beth told me the other day…” she’ll say.
“I’m Beth,” I’ll respond. “You’re talking to Beth.”
“No,” she’ll say. “You’re … the other one.”
“Which other one, Mom?”
“Oh, I don’t know,” she’ll say and laugh. “You know — the other one!”
At least she hasn’t forgotten that there is a Beth. She’s done that with both of my sisters at different times. But maybe she has forgotten me, when talking to someone else, but they didn’t tell me. I’m glad. I don’t think I’m ready to hear it.