Groundhog Day

Groundhog Day has come and gone this year. It was also the 16th anniversary of my mother’s death. I think you have to have a sense of humor to die on Groundhog Day. That’s a celebration loaded with symbols of death and rebirth, accompanied by fanfare and silly hats.
My mother had a very tough life. She grew up dirt poor on a farm in south eastern Texas during the Depression. When she was just 14, her own mother died in childbirth. She had six younger siblings to look after, in addition to school work and farm chores. Then her one true love, a pilot, was shot down over Korea. I think she and my dad settled for one another. The marriage was a disaster and dragged on for 17 excruciating years. My dad paid all his money to Scientology, and couldn’t be bothered with such trivial things as child support. This was back before deadbeat dads’ wages could be garnished. While we didn’t see eye to eye on many things, I know she did the best she could with what little she had. She tried hard to expose me to as many things as possible on an extremely limited budget, and I respect her tremendously for that.
I love you, Mom. Happy Groundhog Day, wherever you are.