Mildred and Blossom

Friendship locked.

Friendship locked.

Mildred Brodsky is my mother’s best friend. They were in the Army Air Corps together as World War II WACs, they lived near one another in spacious apartments in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, they protested, argued, and supported one another for as long as I can remember. They exemplified friendship. When Milly’s husband Zvi, died, Mom and I were there, when either of them needed to go somewhere and didn’t have a babysitter, we’d show up at each other’s apartments. Milly’s daughter, Debbi, and I grew up together. There is something about the imprint of those young years that doesn’t grow old.

I miss those days. Sitting on my father’s shoulders or holding his hand as we walked one long block to the Brooklyn Museum and surrounding park . He pushed me on the swings, caught me at the bottom of the slide before my rump hit the ground and brought me to marvel at the labyrinth of Lionel trains within the grand hallway of the museum.

There is grandeur.

In grandeur.

Milly and my mom took us to the supermarket and placed us in shopping carts. Debbi and I wreaked havoc by yelling the names of body parts (usually private ones) that our mother’s so proudly and boldly taught us. While the words were anatomically accurate, we were not interested in showing off our smarts to strangers, we knew well how to embarrass our mothers. And we did so exquisitely! My mom and Milly walked away from us and the carts. In those days, you could do that for short periods without fearing someone would steal your child.

Milly had an operation yesterday and is on her way to a rehab in New Jersey. It’s difficult knowing someone you love is vulnerable and in pain. Debbi showed Milly the picture of my young mom in the post, What The ???? – . A reminder of a stronger, healthier time. Milly smiled, recognizing Mom immediately, calling her by her Yiddish nickname, Bleemie.

I wept when Debby told me. The ache of missing my parents doesn’t leave, especially when poked with reminders. Like wood in the fireplace, stirred flames rekindle my smoldering heart.Time eases the intensity of my emotions but when located so near the surface, they are easily stoked.

And there they rest, as they should, in a place of honor reserved for special, not perfect, parents.

About wendykarasin

I am complicated and seeking - joy and sorrow, country and city, competition and cooperation. After behavior of a gregarious nature, I require down time to refuel. My loves are children, family, friends, reading, writing, blogging, fitness, and health. I feel most alive when I stay true to my core values. Beauty makes me happy, pain helps me grow.
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4 Responses to Mildred and Blossom

  1. So many wonderful memories here, so personal. Thanks for sharing, Wendy. Remembering hurts, but is also eases our grief. That’s the paradox of going on without loved ones. As long as we keep them close in our hearts, they’re never truly gone, though, and that’s comforting.

  2. mimijk says:

    And may their memory always remain a blessing.

    • wendykarasin says:

      Yes. You spoke of legacies in your post today. They left me the legacy of ancestry, their teachings, and the bitter-sweet reminder of how much I love and miss them. It’s a good hurt.

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