|Horace and Concetta Carter, parents of Marti Carter (Rulli)|
On my 12th birthday I attended my mother's funeral. I've been able to enjoy birthdays since, as I know it would only anger my mom if I didn't celebrate her life instead of mourning her death. I remember little about my father, but clearly recall the day he taught me how to properly put on socks. I was not exactly "fatherless" because my Uncle Jim lived with us and he was an awesome father figure. He graduated Girard College and instilled in me the will to learn and to be a decent person. He taught me the importance of morals. He also taught me to never back down from what I believe is meaningful. My mom taught me how to enjoy the simple things in life, and to never forget that the simple things are usually the most gratifying in the entire scheme of things.
Anniversaries of losing loved ones are sometimes difficult. I rarely talk about those anniversaries, but today was different. It was the exact weather today of the morning I awakened and went to school to my 6th grade classroom and told a fellow student that my mom was home and in pain. I worried about her all day. After school, walking down the street from the bus stop with my twin brother, I was hoping my mom would be feeling better by the time I'd walk in the door. Then I saw the ambulance in the driveway. My mom was already inside of it so I didn't get to see her or to say anything to her. My last recall was of her lying on the sofa in the living room in the morning, and she was moaning. She died that night at 11:10 pm. After her funeral, I hoped to be able to live in the home I'd grown up in, and that we'd go on as best we could without her, but just two weeks later, my Uncle Jim also passed away. My twin, Jimmy, and I were truly orphaned. My oldest half brother took us in.
Life did go on, but I've always been aware of Oct. 17 being a day that was so damn hard. Losing a mother is the hardest thing at ANY age, and sometimes even harder on adults who lose parents because there is so much more to remember, so much more time to miss. But losing a mother at a tender age makes you cling to the short time you did have, and you try harder to remember every morsel you can.
My father was a carpenter, and my mother was a waitress who bought into owning a restaurant shortly before she died. They were not stars or celebrities. They were Mom and Dad.
We, as fans of Natalie Wood, miss her celebrity and talent. She was so much fun to watch -- she was an interesting, shining star. And most of us who "talk" here also have the capability to transcend fanhood. We see Natalie as a woman, a person, a mother of two birth daughters she never got to see grow up and become women. They missed having their mother for all those special and important events and pinnacles in life.
This is a public blog all of my personal friends and family as well as strangers can see (hard to not be truthful when you face people daily), but for people who do not know me, there may exist doubt of how I feel about Natalie's daughters. I was in their position. I know how they felt losing their mother at such young ages. I know how painful moments in life must have been for them. I also strongly feel that had a proper investigation been conducted into Natalie's death, they possibly would feel more free to celebrate their mother's life. I know they miss her. I know it must be hell to have their mother's final hours talked about to this day, but I'm not the only one who has talked about it. Sam Kashner, who broke the stateroom argument in the news was not condemned. Suzanne Finstad, who established a valid timeline and brought so many questions to light was not condemned, but I take more heat. It's okay. I realize it's probably that way because the truth is sometimes unbearable, but the truth is also the only thing that will ease pain in the long run. I've embarrassed the authorities. They deserve it. They could admit they made mistakes: who doesn't make mistakes in a job?
I have not hurt Natalie's family. The tragic happenings on Thanksgiving weekend of 1981 is what hurt them, and I feel complete sympathy for them. The controversy, the lies, and the "mystery" are what cause added turmoil. After the way I was brought up, those lies are something I could never ignore. I posted this at 11:10 exactly because, well, I really felt my mother's presence all day today. RIP, Mom.