I google most everything. Google knows everything…all the important stuff and the junk.
April 6, 2015, five days after Mother died I googled her name. I’m not sure why. I think I expected to see some kind of death notice. But I didn’t. There was nothing that let the world know my mother had passed away. I knew the obituary wouldn’t be there. That’s the family’s responsibility. My responsibility. I hadn’t written it yet. And still haven’t. I will. I’m just trying to make sense of all of it. Trying to do something positive with such a tragedy. No, I knew a big fancy well written obituary outlining all of her loves and accomplishments wouldn’t be there. But I thought there would at least be something listing her name, age, city and date of death. Maybe I expected to see some kind of article about how she was found and how she lived. I’m not exactly sure what I was looking for.
But I did find something. It was strange. It made me sad, cry, mad and in a very strange way – it brought me comfort. It was a mugshot. Mother’s mugshot. MY mother’s mugshot. The whole thing was heartbreaking really. It was dated October 2012. The title read…”MugShot of the Day!!!” Just like that. Three exclamation marks!!! Making fun. It listed her full name, age, arrest date, city she was arrested in and charges. I looked at the picture. She was drunk. I could tell just by looking. She had on her glasses and the picture captured the tears that rolled down her cheek. It showed the misery her addiction had brought into her life. It made me sad. It made me cry. I sat looking at the picture of my crying sad drunk mother as the mugshot of the day. I cried.
Then I noticed the comments. Heartless cruel comments. I’m sure they had no idea her daughter would one day read those things. Especially not just after she died. Or maybe they wouldn’t care. Maybe they couldn’t understand the devastation and heartbreak addiction brings to the addict and those who love them. I don’t really know why they took the time to write ugly comments about a person who was already miserable. It made me mad. Then it just made me sad and cry some more.
People are mean. Making fun of someone when they are at their worst…when they are hurting and obviously in a very bad way is just cruel. I get it. She wasn’t there. They weren’t doing it in front of her. They were hiding behind a computer typing ugliness not facing those who were affected.
I saved the picture to my phone. I knew I would need to be able to look at it in the future.
I looked past the hurt and the ugly comments. It was strange. I found comfort. When I looked at that picture…I was and I am reminded of how miserable my mother was. How miserable I was. How helpless we both were. She had been in a bad way for a very long time. I was thankful she finally had peace. Of course I would have rather she beat the disease. I would have rather had my mother. Not like she was but like I dreamed she could have been. I would have loved for her to have known me. To have known my boys. I would have rather she would have known the simple joys in life. But the disease controlled her. She was eaten up with it and had been for far too long. It had weakened her. Stolen her strength. Stolen her family. Stolen her joy. Stolen her life. The picture reminded me of how sad she had been and brought me peace knowing she was no longer living like that. Besides, what choice did I have? Be miserable and give the disease more power than it already had. Allow it to take even more from me than it already had?
It’s the younger picture of her that initially made me sad. I would look at that picture, before she was controlled. All I could see was a beautiful girl who lost so much. I saw what could have been.
So tonight, as I was typing this – I googled to see what else I could find. Surprisingly, the mugshot is gone. I looked and looked and can’t find it. I have it. I know it existed. I have proof. I looked to see what day I saved the picture – It was April 6th, 2015. Tonight when I googled her name, I found the death notice that I was originally looking for. It was posted April 6th. The very day I was originally searching for it. The day I found the mug shot instead. Strange.
It’s as if God erased that sad, heartbreaking photo where people were making fun of my mother. It made me smile.
Be kind. Show love and compassion.
Finding the sweet side of crazy!
Kandy is in her own words, “a flawed, compassionate, loving, hardworking, strong, independent, perfectly imperfect, empathetic person.” She is also the adult child of an addict and alcoholic mother. Her mother was prone to “ugly, crazy, unbelievable” behaviors. Kandy chooses to dig deep to find the sweetness buried in the crazy.
Kandy is married to her high school sweetheart and they have two boys. Her greatest joy in life is being a mom. Her greatest sadness was watching her mother miss out on the sweet joys of being a mom. Read more about her struggles and triumphs here.