Mom, Her Mind, and Taxes

6 March 2022

I need to bring black and blue pens and my composition notebook. And something that feels comforting, not my weighted blanket because it is too big and too heavy. Maybe Lambie. (Don’t laugh, please.) And the file folder labeled “Mom,” now so big I should split it in two.

The folder reminds me of when I worked at the reception desk for the Derm/Surg clinic at the University of Minnesota. It was back in the days of paper medical records. The Derm patients had records that were one-file folder thick. Derm patients with a chronic problem might have three folders. The transplant patients routinely had folders in the double digits that had to be transported on a cart.

I know how this ends, this file folder expansion with my mother. We’re going to need more folders.

Mom and I have been speaking about her taxes almost daily. I explain that the notice from Fidelity about her RMD is about the Required Minimum Distribution from her IRA and that it has already happened. The only thing she needs to do is put the letter in the stack of papers that she will give to, as she calls him, “her tax man.”

As I explain the RMD, I am saying the same words I said yesterday, and at least twice before that. I am in denial.

I had told mom that next year I would come out so we could do her taxes together. But next year has already arrived.

“It’s so hard to do this when you’re confused.”

“I’ll come out, Mom.”

“Can you come fast?”

Yes. Yes, I can.

Chewing the Cud of Good

orange-brown rust on blue metal
Thankful for hot baths and hot tea.



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