Saturday, April 23, 2011

Happy Easter, and...

To some, Easter is the rebirth of Christ. To some it is the rebirth of the Earth and renewal of the inhabitants of the Earth. Either way, I can't help but wonder what Easter (or any holiday for that matter) may have meant to my grandmother while she was locked up in the system. I personally like the idea of rebirth and change but could Lola ever have that? A depressed woman lost touch (possibly) with her family and basically had nothing. She spent the last 24 years of her life in the system. I wonder what hope she may have felt. I wonder just how many of her family members and friends (religious or not) ever bothered to pay her a visit. Was she someone that could handle a visit? I don't know and this is something I am now trying to find out.

From the records I now have, I know that her whereabouts do not jive with what I was told. My dad mentioned that the last time he saw her (at the urging of his first wife) she was at Norwalk State Hospital. Based on the timing of my dad's first marriage, Lola was not in Norwalk, but Camarillo. Why did my dad say she Norwalk? I don't know and now I cannot ask him. I know this was painful for him and, therefore, something he wouldn't speak much of. I also now know that depression is no big deal (unless you're living with it) yet in the 1930s was enough to change the course of one's life depending on one's ability to cope with the condition. In many cases, including Lola's, you could be locked up and untreated. Once released, it just possibly got worse and ruined relationships with family and friends (again, based on ability to cope) and that was during a time when these rather common conditions were not so common and rather unsavory, and a time when this was just rather shameful and not talked about.

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