Thursday, June 19, 2008


Today is Connor's 11th birthday.

His big gift was "Guitar Hero" for the Wii, which was his present last year. I can hear the strains of 'Slow Ride' from downstairs, and figure I'll probably be drafted into a 'guitar' battle before much time has passed. I actually did try it (to "Slow Ride", the easiest of the pieces) and felt almost as if I was pulled into a dance, or an amusement park ride. I felt like a rock star!

Today was also a day that Gary got a basal cell lesion excised from his cheek. He was gone a few hours this morning and came home sporting a rather bulky bandage on his face. By the time we were going to a local pizza party for a small family celebration Gary was fading a little, tuckered.

We met his mother there.

We had our meal and Connor opened his gift from her (he'd already wheedled us into letting him open his from us earlier in the day.) She realized when his gifts were open that she'd forgotten to take his picture. So she shot one and was getting into position to take one with Gary and Connor.

Gary said, "No pictures." (He tends to be self-conscious about blemishes on his face; asked me to be the one who went to the counter to do the ordering and such.) She said, "why not?" He said, "I don't want to be in any pictures." She said, "I'm going to shoot it from this side and your bandage won't even be in it." He said, "I just don't want to be in a picture."

She said, "It isn't for you. It's for me." She said, "Tough tarts." And, she took the picture. I could not believe it. She really believed that the fact that she wasn't going to give him the photo trumped his wish to not have a picture taken of him. I'll bet she doesn't believe there was anything at all wrong in what she did.

I suppose this sheds some light in what I've recently realized about Gary and differentiation.

Excuse me, I've got a guitar to play...


Mrs. Spit said...

Ugh, were it not for the fact that I'm pretty sure my mother is still here in Edmonton - I'd swear she was Gary's mum.

I set boundaries with my mother, she goes charging past them. Then I have deal with limiting my time spent with her.

very frustrating.

excavator said...

You're right, ugh.

My parents were invasive too but they set their own limit to when I turned 21 and left home. So I had to up the ante and leave at 18.

At least they've stayed pretty true to their word.

I hope your mom was able to set herself aside and be a comfort and help for you when Gabriel died...and can continue to be.

Douglas W said...

Although Gary's mother's failure to accept his expressed wish about the photo is one thing, the taking of photos in general reminds me of something else.

An incident in my story about 'Bruises' is one example... photos that were taken willingly and with permission are later stolen because of an apparent change of mind.

People's reactions to photos being taken is worthy of a major study - some react as though part of their spirit is being captured and taken from them; some react with overt expressions of vanity; some can't wait to have their image captured and go through all kinds of poses to present the photographer with their best angle.

I think I might write a blog post about it.