I remember an incident that is typical of our relationship that took place while I was in grade school. We lived very close to the Catholic school I attended and I'd come home for lunch everyday.
One day I didn't come home and my mother went to the school to track me down. The principal told Mama that I must still be in the classroom. Mama madly marched up to my classroom. She was relieved to see me (of course she thought the worst) and was furious with the nun, Sister Annunciata. She demanded to know what had happened and why I was sitting in the classroom when I should be home eating lunch.
The nun said that some students were talking during class. When she asked the class who was talking I was the only one to raise my hand and tell the truth. My punishment was to stay in the classroom during lunchtime. This did not sit well with Mama... and she started her rant.
Sister Annunciata, you mean to tell me that since my son was the only one to tell the truth and not lie, you punish him by not sending him home to eat his lunch? You know how much he loves his food! And you punished me, scaring me half to death making me think my son died. Vincent, from now on you NEVER tell the truth, you LIE if you have to. If this is what telling the truth gets ya, it's a lot of baloney. Come home with me now, you're going to eat your lunch. And Sister, he may get back to school a little late. (Oh boy Mama was something - just like a pitbull, she didn't let go and really worked herself up).
The nun tried calming Mama down saying that it isn't good to lie. She apologized for not calling to make Mama aware of the situation. Mama ignored the nun and won this round of Italian Catholic guilt. And I had a fabulous lunch taking my time eating, not rushing back and realizing that Mama out guilted the nun.
Mama has always been Mama Drama and has passed the genes onto me. In Mama's last few years there have been many times I behaved the same way to the doctors and nurses like Mama did to the nun. There's a little Mama Drama in all of us and it just goes to show you... somethings never change.
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