Christmas was, much like Thanksgiving, just fine. Mom was quiet most of the time, enjoyed dinner and desert, and really enjoyed playing a card game after dinner, though each time it was her turn to ‘lead’ the hand, we had to teach her the game anew. Once my husband took mom and my step daughter back to their respective places, I had a few minutes with my mother-in-law.
My MIL cleared up the earlier phone call curiosity. My mom called my MIL (also a miracle) who told mom to call my husband’s cell phone. I asked my MIL “How did mom get a hold of you?” She said she’d given mom her phone number in a tone bordering on, ‘Duh.’ I explained that the minute anything in mom’s possession, say a piece of paper with a phone number written on it, is covered by something else, it ceases to exist, and this is why it was so astonishing that mom retaining my MIL’s phone number for as long as she has. My MIL took this in and then shot back, “Well, she can still speak Old French!” I asked if she’d noticed what it took to include mom in the card came, after explaining that mom had learned Old French in college. This lead to a conversation that lets me know my MIL is both resistant to my mother’s diagnosis at some level, and is scared about what her own future might look like should she suffer the same fate as my mom. At 77 my MIL is 8 years older than my mother was as my dad and I started talking about mom’s state of mind. While my MIL is repetitive here and there, I don’t foresee her body outlasting her brain.