Wednesday, July 11

Phone Calls

In the past few years I have had more phone calls that have started with - "This is So-And-So, I am calling to let you know that Your-Loved-One... has passed away, is in the hospital with food poisoning, was thrown off a horse, has fallen through a roof, has tried to - you get the idea.  Too many phone calls.  Let me rephrase, too many distressing phone calls.

So last night when the phone call began "Katie, this is Lila.  I am calling to let you know Virginia..." my heart stopped.  As she spoke I slowly walked into the other room, fearing the worse and not wanting to be around Turkey for the news.  After all Nana (Virginia) is 96, and she had been missing in action for 2 weeks, and the hospital said she had been discharged, and it was the day before the anniversary of my step-dad's passing.

Thankfully the words that followed where "is fine.  She is in a rehabilitation facility".

And breath.

I meekly asked if I could speak to her, expecting her voice to sound more frail, more distant.  Instead what I got was her, her old self her.  She sounded better than she had in months.  Maybe it was me, but she sounded down right chipper.

Then she joked, "I've had Lila calling everyone for me so they know I am OK.  Can you believe it, people where actually looking for me in the obituaries?"

Ha, I laughed.  A dry sarcastic laugh.  I too had been looking in the obituaries for her.  Would I admit this to her?  Never, so I just laughed again.

God, do I love that women.  I really hope when I am 96 I have half the energy, spunk and spark she has.  I hope I can make jokes about my own mortality.  She has lived through a lot, not just the depression and all the wars of the last century, but she's also lost two of her children (while they were relatively young) and her husband (who was also relatively young) and countless other friends and family members, and survived a house fire.  She truly is a fighter.  And while I know some day the call I had last night will go another direction I pray, everyday, that that day is a few years down the road.


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