POST: 'Every Good Girl Deserves Fun' - losing to Alzheimer's
What it’s about?
In spite of the use of the word “fun” in its title, Every Good Girl Deserves Fun is not about wistful but pretty young women sipping fruity cocktails and talking about how they need to go out more.
Set in small-town Tomah, Wisconsin, Every Good Girl Deserves Fun is a story about a beloved piano teacher losing herself to early onset Alzheimer's and her young daughters, losing themselves to their mother's inevitable, impending death. But it is also about feeling slivers of hope in times of desperate pain and doing so through the unrelenting resonance of music.
What'd I experience?
As I get older, I find myself periodically thinking about my parents and how one day they might not be around anymore. These thoughts, though dark, remind me to be kinder to my parents, to take in all the love they give me instead of resisting it for being too subtle or too bold.
Watching Every Good Girl Deserves Fun, I couldn’t stop thinking about my own mother and her mortality. What would I do if my mother gets too sick to even think for herself? Will I, like one of the daughters in the play, look for naturopathic treatments for my mother and assume that it is the toxicity of western medicine, not the natural course of life, that is responsible for her illness? Would I feel so burdened by the responsibility of loving my mother that I would leave her in a nursing home to be cared for by strangers with dead or dying mothers of their own?
I couldn't come up with answers then, and don't have any now. I don't know what I would do in such a situation and therefore I can't judge the daughters in the play for their sometimes erratic behavior regarding their mother (i.e. having tentative plans to overdose their mother on OxyContin). The answer the play seems to provide is a bittersweet. You can try everything in your power to keep your loved ones alive and living life as they always have, but their death is inescapable. But the sweetness comes in know that what ultimately matters is how much love, not how many moments, you share in their final days.