I don't believe in dwelling on the past, even though I do. I can't help but notice that when I go on the "did you grow up in Chatham, Ontario?" Facebook page, everyone remembers everyone in my family . . . except me.
I guess I was a cipher. I was invisible. Could I walk through walls? I don't remember.
They remember Arthur - as who wouldn't, mad genius that he was? They remember Walt the musician and my eldest sister Pat. They remember my house.
I remember being alive - it seems I do, but do you know something? My mother left me out of her obituary. I was the only one not named, and it was not an oversight. I was left out deliberately. Some members of my current family were kind of upset that she had lopped off a daughter as casually as docking a dog's tail. Imagine un-happening your own child like that, pretending that she had never been. What kind of heart. . . or lack of it?. . . would be responsible for that?
I can't help but feel that there is NOTHING my children could do that would make me do that to them, cut them out so meanly, so shockingly. They could be axe-murderers. They could axe-murder their father. Still they would be my children, my own, unto death, and I would name them, include them. Acknowledge that they existed, that I gave birth to them and raised them, and that they were loved.
Since I thought of this song - we used to sing it "Cha-tham, Cha-tham, Chatham-Chatham-jing-jing-jing", I thought I'd post a few of the nicer pictures that surfaced during this strange memory-purge.
I don't know why I'd even want to go back, when my mother did her level best to erase me. But maybe it's because she didn't. Hell, people get upset at being cut out of the WILL. But I've never before heard of this, pretending a child was never born, as I so often wished I hadn't been. I was one of those kids who always knew she was an accident, and I suppose this was her way of correcting it (at last!).
But here they are, the pictures, with no explanation at all.