I've not written about Mimi in a long time. This woman, my mother in law, was one of the kindest people I've ever met in my life, but she was a little whack-a-doo by the time her brain metastasis was diagnosed. Oh, in hindsight, there were signs that something was amiss long before the fateful CT scan that came with bitter news.
Her personality had changed tremendously and at times, she got a little mean. Not mean in an adult sort of way, but in the way of a 4th grade school girl. If she didn't like what somebody was saying, she'd stick her tongue out and make horrible faces behind that person's back. She did this to my colleague's mother at a bake sale, and while I agreed my colleague's mom was being a bossy pain in the ass, it's just not acceptable to mock people, and that's what Mimi was doing. I had to pull her aside more than once, with little effect, to plead with her not to make faces at the adults who were present.
Little did I know it was the cancer talking.
By the time we scheduled the lung biopsy and wedge resection, I knew what was up in her noggin. The day of surgery, the pre-op staff came to get me to calm Mimi down. She had it in her head that the patient waiting for surgery across the aisle from her was Dick Cheney, and Lord, she was giving it to him good. Here was a man she detested and she was not going to miss her opportunity to let him know exactly what she thought of him and his politics.
While I never found out what happened to this man, and I deftly avoided eye contact with his family in the waiting room, I hope he did alright. If he heard what Mimi said that day, I hope he forgave her lunacy.
Me, I'm glad I find humor in those memories. In the thick of things I was mortified, but 5 years down the road, I'm able to find laughter in the things she said and did when she was ill.
And she was right--that man was the spitting image of Dick.