Thoughtful Thursday: Hoax

June 9, 2011

Thoughtful ThursdayWhen I was on the airplane on my way to college, before the start of my freshman year, I had an irrational thought. When the plane landed, how did I know it was really the city where I planned to spend the next four years? They could just slap a sign on the airport and I’d believe that it was any city. It would clearly involve an elaborate hoax, not only the sign people at the airport but the airline and all of my fellow travelers. The hoax could even go beyond the airport if you planted a monument here, a regional food there. When I got to school, how would I know it was really the college it claimed to be? How long could they keep up the charade — all four years? I told you it was irrational.

I haven’t experienced anything like that until recently. I keep wondering, what if my mother isn’t really dead? Maybe she just stopped calling me. The only thing keeping me from this train of thought is that I watched her die. Maybe she wasn’t really dead and the medical staff lied? No, I watched her breaths slow and slow and cease. But maybe that wasn’t her? No, it was her. Because she was so sick she didn’t look entirely like herself, but it was her.

A year ago this week, my mother was living in her own house, driving her own car, going about her usual activities. And then all of a sudden she was in the hospital, and nothing ever went back to the way it had been. I know none of that was a hoax, because I could hear and see her new reality. But the absence of someone, there are a lot of things that could explain that. She could be hiding out. She could be giving me the silent treatment. She could be dead.

Sometimes, someone is late coming home, or you don’t hear from them for a while, and you wonder if something awful has happened. And sometimes something awful does happen and you wonder if it didn’t happen after all.

Have you ever wondered if anything was an elaborate hoax? Have you ever had a hard time believing that something was true?

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14 Responses to “Thoughtful Thursday: Hoax”

  1. figgymommy Says:

    I actually had really similar things happen for quite a while after my brother passed away. It crept over into my dreams, too, and I had really REALLY vivid dreams where he was there, and telling me it had all been a big mistake.

  2. strongblonde Says:

    wow. this is a tough one. i’m so irrational in so many of my thoughts, but nothing is jumping to mind. most recently i have had a hard time believing what a horrible place my parents and B’s brother live in. it’s our hometown. it has always been at the top of the crime charts, but things are really hitting close to home now. in the last year my parents’ home has been broken into three times and on monday b’s brother’s house was broken into and he was held at gunpoint. i didn’t witness the event, but i know that it happened. i do find myself, however, wondering if i just made it up or saw it on tv and mistakenly thought that it happened to our family.

    to be honest, though, i have a harder time believing good things when they happen. i still don’t fully believe i’m done with school. sometimes it seems like it just didn’t happen.

    OH! i just thought of another one! šŸ™‚ the other day i was thinking back to all of the fertility treatments. and i honestly thought to myself, “did all of that really happen? did i just make that up in my mind?” i can hardly believe it! šŸ™‚

  3. Photogrl Says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever really thought anything was an elaborate hoax, but I’ve had a hard time believing some things were true.

    For months after my mom’s death I would find myself waiting for her phone call or I’d pick up the phone and start dialing her number. And like figgymommy, she would be in my dreams, one in particular was so real and vivid that I woke up crying, really believing that she was still alive.

    Even after 3 strong betas, kicking, and an enormous belly with the twins last year, I don’t think I really believed they were coming until they arrived.

  4. St. Elsewhere Says:

    Oh BabySmiling, Many many hugs. You miss your mom so much.

    I don’t want to elaborate, but I just lived through an act, a play, a hoax. You know what that was.

    And there is something I am experiencing right now. What if what I see is just coincidental wrong results? Will talk about this on my blog later.

  5. Ana Says:

    Your airplane college story sounds very familiar, I think I’ve had similar (if not so elaborate) thoughts, but nothing more specific.

    More importantly, I am wishing you peace & comfort as you process this difficult time. It really shows how much you loved & miss your mother.

  6. Elana Kahn Says:

    Oh for sure! I wish I could think up a really good example…but I’m drawing a complete blank. But I have definitely cooked up some pretty wild ideas in my head before about things.

  7. Cat Says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever thought something was a hoax aside from the people online that pretend to be a parent to multiples.

    I’m sure my dad is dead. Even though we never saw his body, I know he’d never go this long without contacting us. He’d be just beside himself about being a grandpa, for one thing.

    I did have a hard time believing a mother, MY mother, could ever be such a horrible person. It took years, but we finally cut ties completely and life is so much easier. I miss having a mother figure in my life, but that’s no different than when she was actually in our lives because she was so terrible at it.

  8. xj2608 Says:

    Totally had the same feeling after my dad died. I watched him die at the hospital. And then I would have these very realistic dreams where I would have the explanation of where he had been (because the dreams started years after he died), but he would never talk to me. I would follow him around trying to figure out the mystery.

    When I’m awake? I can’t remember any specifics, but I do know I’ve felt that special kind of surreality that you’re describing.

  9. Tara (TIMO) Says:

    I just have the dream where my university calls and I didn’t finish all of the course requirements for graduation so my degree really isn’t mine yet. Not a hoax exactly.

    Hugs! I’m sorry you’re going through this tough time.


  10. Your college city hoax seems like a Jim Carrey movie.

    I do understand the mother/hoax thing. I’m sorry. I’m just sorry.

    To this day I do believe there was a not-too-elaborate hoax played on us at the zenith of our IF treatments: http://drama2bmama.blogspot.com/2009/09/you-cant-study-for-blood-test.html

  11. Kristin Says:

    I can only imagine the pain you are feeling having lost your mom. The hoax thoughts are not that unusual.

    And, oh yeah, I not only thought something was a hoax but, before I clued in to it, I got caught up in one of these put on a tragedy show to get sympathy from people (I was one of the people giving sympathy). It was ugly. It was bad.


  12. Not really in the way you describe it. I do however, mainly with horrible things that happened, have these ‘what if I could have come to the rescue’ scenarios. They are about as irrational as feeling that something was an elaborate hoax, but I guess somehow a similar way of dealing with something you cannot get to terms with yet.

  13. SamIAm Says:

    I’m so glad you wrote this. I keep thinking that all of the deaths of the last year (in my family) have been a dream. I keep thinking that I forgot to call my mom on Mother’s Day, and she’s going to be mad at me. Or that I should have called my dad yesterday…. I wonder if this is all just an elaborate joke on me. Will we ever get used to our lives being this way (i.e. without a parent)?

  14. Rebecca Says:

    I’m a huge conspiracy theorist, soooo I basically think everything is a hoax?


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