by Beate Sigriddaughter

           Mom might die any day, that's why I can't say anything. She has been dying for years. So when she painted a picture of me in which I looked fat, gross and stupid, all the while raving about how beautiful and spiritual I looked in the portrait, the best I could do was dump the thing, together with her hatred for me, and when asked, I tell her of course I still have it.

            I mean what do you do when someone tells you how beautiful you are and shows you that they think it is a lie?

            Grandma has Alzheimer's, so she more or less gets away with things. Mom did a portrait of her, too, a watercolor. One day Grandma dumped her spaghetti plate, with sauce, on the portrait, which couldn't be restored to its original official beauty afterwards.

            So of course Mom holds a grudge, though no one can tell exactly where and when it started.