nothing a bowl or two won’t fix?

There’s something wrong with this picture in that I am standing here in the kitchen, rolling meatballs for a dinner for seven, and my parents are getting stoned in their bedroom.

The thing is, both of them have good reasons – my father attempts to avoid the physical pain and diminished appetite of a chemo-laden life, and my mom… well… quality control? (okay, she’s grumpy, having forgone alchoholic beverages for Lent). They don’t do it often – as far as I can tell – but in this case my mom has been a bit off today and yeah, I suggested the idea. My dad seduced her into the bedroom, waving matches.

I’m not sure why I’m getting a “grumpy vibe” today. I could be imagining it. Or, in our life in this house as a family (sort of) of seven, it’s possible there is something going on. Is it because they are getting tired of us living here? Is it because I have been smoking (cigarettes) on the front porch? (this is OK by the “rules”, or at least it has been so far.) Is it that I borrowed my parents’ van several times over the last couple days before Ralph got our tabs renewed? Is it because I asked my mom to help me cook dinner? Is it because I took her up on babysitting Nels today so Sophie and I could go to the gym? Do you sense a pattern to these questions? I will never know if the grumpy vibe is imagined or real unless I relentlessly ferret it out because, as I’ve referenced, my family is not into direct communication. P.S. I am supposed to know, somehow. You know, it should be understood.

Except tomorrow, when I blow that out of the water and say to my mom: “Hey, I was getting a ‘grumpy vibe’ outta you yesterday. Was I imagining that?” and I’ll have my answer.

I am very proud of her for giving up booze for Lent; I hope she can make it. I am an over-drinker too, so I’m just imagining it’s hard without knowing what to say to her. I am wishing her better health and better sleep; she has been having trouble since we’ve been here (and possibly before).

By the way, I noticed a marked difference, post pot-smoking, in meatball uniformity and quantity on the ones she was rolling. She was worse than last summer’s Farm Boy Justin cutting carrots for me in the kitchen.

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