~Monday, January 21, 2013

Never be rude to your mother

I was laying on Abe's bed when the phone rang. It was my mom. I rolled my eyes. We had already spoken three times that day, and Abraham just got home from work. I wanted to visit with him.

I picked up the phone and sighed. My mom prattled about the movie she had just seen. She had recognized the actor from a previous movie.

"Why are you quiet?" she asked.

"I dunno. That was a scintillating story." I replied.

I was being a sarcastic butthole and I knew it. I didn't want to talk on the phone again. And if I let it go to voicemail, she'd just call every two minutes.

Instead of joking back with me, my mother's feelings were hurt. I was crushed.

About five minutes later the phone rang again. Just when I was finally able to talk to Abraham about his day. It was my mom. Again.

"Oh my god!" I shouted frustrated.

"Hello this is Cindy. I'm a nurse. You're mom's been in a car accident...

She continued with the details, but I couldn't hear them over the sirens of the firetrucks and ambulances.

"... she's being taken to the hospital."

I got off the phone and started looking for my shoes.

"You're going now?" Abraham asked. "We don't know what's wrong yet."

"My mom's going to the hospital. I'm not leaving her there by herself."

That's the difference between men and women. Men help by action; women help by caretaking.

Abraham drove me to the hospital. It was a rainy Friday night. The emergency room was filled with weirdos. We were ushered to her room.

"Is this because I was mean to you?" I joked as I entered the door.

She didn't answer me. She was in pain from the airbag and steering column. My mother, who I had been horrible to, had blood on her favorite sweater. There were droplets of blood on her brand new leather handbag she was so proud of. I picked up the bag, spat and wiped it clean.

"Was there blood on it?" She asked.


My mom doesn't know what happened. A car appeared in front of her and she t-boned it. She doesn't know the type of car it was. She doesn't know if the other driver was hurt. She was trapped in her car.

An officer entered the room. He must have been straight out of boot camp He issued my mom a ticket for running a red light. She argued that she was traveling with the flow of traffic. She had never received a ticket nor been in a car accident. He was curt and ignored her pain.

"He could use some improvement on his bedside manor," I observed loud enough so he that could hear me.

The accident was at 5:45 pm. We left the emergency room at 1:30 am. It took that long for one X-ray and one visit from one doctor. My mother was fine. The car was not.

Abraham drove my mother and me back to her house. I still had to get my dog and pick up my medication so I could stay with her. And then I had to find an all-night pharmacy. It was after 3 am when I got to bed.

Lesson learned: never be rude to your mother.


Abraham came over to the house for lunch the following afternoon. With him he brought a bouquet of flowers and a get-well balloon.

"My mom told me to bring flowers with me. I said the flowers wouldn't heal her, and my dad agreed, but she was so insistent that I told her I would say they were from her," he told me.

Once again, the difference between men and women.

"You set the bar high. Now everyone's going to feel like a jerk when they show up to visit without flowers," I kissed him.

My mother asked for Abraham's parent's address so she could thank them properly.

"My parents said they got a letter from your mom," Abraham told me a week later, somewhat embarrassed.

"Did they tell you what the letter said?" I asked.


"It said as thankful as she was for the flowers, she was more thankful for the person who brought them. She told your parents to be proud of you and that they must be wonderful people to raise someone like you."

Abraham beamed from ear to ear. I'm not sure I'd ever seen him smile so fully. It reminded me of a child's smile after she gets a certificate for perfect attendance in school. That simple, unabashed joy.

He was right to be proud of himself. My mother's words were true.

~Friday, January 04, 2013

Ring in the New Year

On New Years Eve, the girls and I sat around a table while the boys watched a movie.

"2013 is going to be a big year," I smiled.

"I want to be the first to get engaged. Oh damn, we're out of Jello shots," announced Jenna. She looked at her sister Katie. "I hope that doesn't hurt your feelings, but I want to be first."

"Well you've been with Government Mule longer than we've been with our boyfriends," I sympathized.

"Yeah but he says he doesn't want to get married while he's unemployed," she frowned.

Government Mule has recently passed the one-year mark of unemployment.

"And that's perfectly understandable," chimed in Harvey.

"Abraham and I were updating Facebook all Christmas Day to see if you got engaged," I told Katie.

She frowned and shook her head. I couldn't read her expression. I don't know if she was disappointed or just didn't like talking about it or something else. But usually she's the most vocal about wanting to get engaged.

I don't really like talking about it. People's questions about where I want to get married and how soon do I want to wait before children make me uncomfortable. I'm not engaged. Yet. Nothing to get excited about. Yet.

And maybe this is where I sound like a brat, but I'm also the most confident in my relationship over Katie's or Jenna's. Katie's boyfriend has agreed to go ring shopping, but he still threatens to postpone engagement every time she talks about it. I'm not even sure Government Mule is doing everything he can to look for a job.

Meanwhile Abraham just flew me up north to meet his bubbie and to get her blessing. Which she did abundantly. She spent so long telling Abraham to hurry up and get married that he picked a pretzel out of her dish on the coffee table and slipped it on my finger. The day after he spoke to my father, I caught Abraham looking at pictures of engagement rings (I couldn't contain my squeal that time). Abraham's mother just asked him how big of a wedding I wanted.

My time is coming. I am quiet in my confidence; to be anything else would feel boastful. So I didn't tell the girls about Abraham speaking to my father or looking at diamond rings or about our families' excitement. When the attention is turned on me, I change the subject.

"So if you get engaged this year, will you also get married this year?" I asked.

"Yes," Jenna and Katie both agreed. "Before football season."

Maybe I'm superstitious after all.


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