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Meet CW

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CW is my Mom (yes, that totally hot babe above), whose real name is Shelley Ann, though everyone calls her Ann because she hates her first name.  How she came to be called CW is a long story that starts in a land far, far away.

OK, not really.  It’s a short story.  I guess if you’re still reading, you’d maybe like to hear it.

So my Dad used to call his Mom “Crazed.”  He seems to like dubbing the women he loves with these questionable terms of endearment because when Crazed passed away, his own wife inherited the title.  Over time, she became Crazed Woman and eventually, CW for short.

Mom calls him Crazy Man in return.  Despite these signs of marital dysfunction, they really do love each other, even if you do find threats on Crazy Man’s life from CW in the refrigerator from time to time…

Love how she signed it.  Since there are so many people that would write a note like this, especially considering they live alone.

Anyway, I don’t have much to tell you about CW except that she’s my crazy Mom and I love her warts and all, but I needed to introduce you to her because I’m going to be sharing a recipe with “CW” in the title soon, and it was better to make a whole separate post with her introduction and explanation of her nickname rather than bog down the recipe with it.

I guess I don’t talk about Mom a lot on my blog because, honestly, she causes me a lot of grief, and I don’t want to use my blog as an outlet to complain or bash any one I love.  She was and is a great Mom despite her issues and I thank God for her.  Because of her, I studied hard and got good grades in school because she cared.  She taught me right from wrong and introduced me to God, starting me on my path to becoming a Christian, and that is the most biggest, best, and important gift any one can give someone.  I’m so thankful for my mother.

Mom has battled mental illness since she was a teen.  I never realized she was different, I just thought she was mean and that she had what Dad called “nervous breakdowns” in the summer.  She could not handle it when I left home and as my sisters left home in the years after me, she had the worst period of her life when she was living in a complete nightmare fantasy that she had created in her head that involved a past she never lived.  To give you a small idea of what she was like during that time, she used to try to peel off my mask (i.e. my face) when I would visit, to see if I was her daughter or an imposter.

It took a long, long time, but Mom finally came back to reality.  Now she is different from when she was raising us, her hard edges have softened, at least where we’re concerned, and she is positive and supportive and in general, a lot more light-hearted.  She still lives up to her nickname, but in a way that makes it OK to make light of it because it’s not very serious.

 

Mom has only been treated for mental illness once in her life and likely will never be treated again unless she becomes dangerous to herself or others.  She was institutionalized for three months as a teen and was raped while under heavy drug therapy and she refuses to return to a mental health practitioner.  When Dad was in the hospital after his stroke, I could barely get her to come to see him, she was so scared to enter the hospital, and I had to hold her hand the whole way. But just like she pulled through for me when I was hospitalized, she pulled through for her Crazy Man too.

I don’t push the matter of her seeking help since Dad is also against it, and especially now that she seems to finally found a moderate amount of equilibrium.  Sometimes it gets pretty rocky, but for the most part, Mom does fairly well and we have learned to live with her the way she is.  She’s actually quite normal on the surface, and you’d never guess she had a problem if you met her.  It takes a while before you start to suspect there might be a little more crazy to her than the evil ring in her laughter. LOL!

So this is my Mom, CW.  I shared a lot more than I planned to but the words kind of tumbled out of my fingertips. Now you finally know my Mom and soon, I’ll be sharing a recipe from her.  Don’t worry, it’s not poisonous! lol  In the mean time, here are some more pictures I dug up while searching for them for this blog.  I really didn’t think I would find very many and was glad I’d collected more than I thought.

FYI, all the photos on this post will have titles pop up if you hover your mouse over them.

And I just couldn’t resist ending with this photo of my Mom with her parents…

When they came to visit that summer, Grandpa (the one who gave me the bike) totally confiscated my hot pink sun hat that I had just bought for the beach, claiming to love how the wide brim kept the sun off of him.  I hadn’t even had the chance to wear it yet, but he managed to talk me into letting him keep it and he took it back to Joplin with him.  I’m telling you, he wore that hat all over Wichita while he was here, flitting in and out of health food stores, and the man runs everywhere so he was quite the spectacle. Maybe craziness runs in the family?  You be the judge. ;)

 

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About Veronica

I have a kitchen addiction and love to collect & share recipes. My passion is baking but I love to cook as well. The only thing I don't like to do in the kitchen is wash dishes, but my husband generally does them for me in exchange for his dinner.

27 responses »

  1. Veronica what a great post about your Mom. It sounds like you’re all in a pretty good place at this point – and I can understand why those words came spilling out – I would guess that any time you bring her up you feel like you’re holding words back and that would probably be most difficult in your personal blogspace no?
    I loved the pictures and stories – can’t wait for a CW recipe :)

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    • You have no idea! lol I used to blog on myspace and shared a lot about my frustrations with Mom but that was different, my readers were personal friends. While some of my readers here are personal friends, it’s not the same and it wouldn’t be right to share all that here. So yeah, I still feel maybe I went too far, but really it’s so hard for me! I am terrible at oversharing-lol.

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  2. We’ve talked a lot about our families and the balance you’ve found with your Mom now is wonderful. My mother’s scale is tipped a wee bit too far for that to happen here…lol! Loved seeing all the pictures and can’t wait for a recipe from her. At least she cooked and baked too, mine thought hot dogs and beans were nutritious ;) No wonder I love to cook, I had too!

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    • Your Mom’s scale was always tipped to far if you ask me! lol Yes, Mom is a good cook but not very good at baking. Like you turned to cooking just to have something edible, I turned to baking just to have something sweet (that was yummy).

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  3. Wow Veronica what a story Thanks for sharing from you heart! This is what has molded you into the Beautiful person you are inside and out! Thank God for the healing that has taken place and I pray it continues to only get better! I always enjoy the pictures you post! Can’t wait for Mom’s recipe!!! :)

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    • Well, thank you, and I do think that our childhoods shape us a lot and I give her a lot of credit for the person I am today. She wasn’t a perfect Mom but I don’t think there IS a perfect Mom. I know she did her best and that’s what matters.

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  4. I recently joined your blog. I am so glad I did. You have a wonderful Mom (with all her flaws). Thank you for sharing her story and yours. You’ve calmed my heart. So great you Mom knows how to cook, my Mom… well… she tries. Can’t wait for CW’s recipe!

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  5. I’m so glad you shared about your mom. I feel like I know you better through these stories. And your grandpa in the pink hat–haha! Awesome!

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  6. This is a totally awesome post – I can tell how much your mom means to you and I think that is awesome! I can’t wait to see her recipes!

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  7. Seems like your mothers wonderful genes and beautiful personality definitely passed onto you my friend – she sounds inspirational!
    Thank you for sharing her with us all :)

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

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    • This comment makes me do the evil laugh ala CW! ahahahaha-beautiful personality. Sorry, I never would equate that with Mom but she does have her good points, that’s for sure. She inspires me to be UNlike her-bwah! Oh I’m so mean. But it’s true.

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  8. I had no idea about your family history, Veronica. What a thing to go through as a daughter…but what a blessing your mom is to you, too. Mental illnesses are a horrid, heart-breaking thing…having been through one, I know the turmoil and suffering I put my own family through. My admiration and respect for you have grown so much more now that I know a bit about your past, Veronica. It’s touching to see how much you’ve learned and grown because of your mother, her human spots and all. What a testimony.

    By the way, you look SO much like your mother!!!!! Two stunning beauties!!

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    • Thank you for your thoughtful words, Sophia. I like how you put it: human spots. We all have them so when it comes to family, we have to just deal and count it as joy. And thank you for the compliment. I think she puts me to shame. But if you put her and my youngest sister side-by-side, you’d really see the similarities except Lacey is blonde haired and blue eyed so usually people say I look like her since I’m the only one with the same coloring. I got my Dad’s big chin and my Grandma’s fat nose. Would have like Mom’s but that’s OK. Could have been worse! :)

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  9. Thank you for sharing your mom’s story. It says something about your entire family, that you would find a way to stick it out and stay connected. So many people with mental illness lose ties with their loved ones.

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    • Hm, I guess you’re right. I never thought about it that way. One of my best friends gave up on her mother and cut her out of her life because she was addicted to pain medication and while I certainly understand on a logical level, on an emotional level I just can’t. I can’t say I would never get to that place, but it is hard to imagine giving up on my own mother. Ever. Our family is forgiving to a fault and we stick together no matter what. Thanks for making me see that and appreciate it.

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  10. Pingback: Stabilized Whipped Cream « Veronica's Cornucopia

  11. Loved this post. So good getting to know your mom. I appreciate you opening up about her mental illness… I love your openness and honesty and it shows that you are a real person. That’s terrible to hear what happened to her in the mental health institution… I am earning my degree to become a mental health counselor and can’t imagine this kind of thing happening! Just terrible. I can understand her hesitancy to see someone again. I think my father may be suffering from depression or some sort of ptsd but I know he will never go see anyone either. It’s great to see that you two still have a close relationship and I can’t wait to see CW’s recipe :)

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    • I think most people that suffer from it don’t want help. Maybe part of it is admitting there’s a problem, it’s more real if they actuall get the help they need. Who knows. It’s frustrating though.

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  12. V – I loved this post so much! I am glad you talked about CW and that the words kept pouring out through your fingertips on the keyboard. :D

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  13. Maybe craziness runs in the family? I would have to vote for yes. :)

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  14. Pingback: CW’s Strawberry Shortcake « Veronica's Cornucopia

  15. Pingback: Kansas State Fair 2012 part 5: The Banana Bread Journey | Veronica's Cornucopia

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