I didn’t recognize the voice or the number that flashed across my caller I.D.
9 – 5 – 6 . . . ?
Did I pay all of my bills on time? Sad but it’s true. That’s what I thought.
Her hellos were familiar but over the ruckus of three boys hopped up on video games a la Funtyme of Okemos and dum dums, it was hard to make out.
And then it hit.
“Granddaughter, you have been on my mind.”
She went on for a minute about all of the times she thought of calling me and failed. She and I both know that the call fail will always be with me. Someday I will regret it.
She heard that I was hurting. She heard that things were not easy. She, like God, came right on time even if it was not when I asked.
Her yeah, yeahs were like the ones said over a little girl with bloody, skinned knees.
She didn’t say it was fine. She didn’t say she knew how to fix it. She said that I was growing.
Truth is I am feeling much, much better. Days are making more sense. Past trauma doesn’t seem to be chasing me down with such leg aching speed. I am stronger for it. I am not hiding from it.
She just put a name on it. Growing. Stretching into my own bigger space in this world. Learning how much more room I have to fill in this world. Recognizing that I have never been less than but always more than how I was treated when I was just a tiny girl.
Been there. Done that. Bought the t-shirt.
Her jokes come like my own, tinged with just enough reality to ensure that others can recognize truth behind the knee slapper.
I hope I grow up to be just like her.
I programmed her phone number into my fancy texting, posting, mapquesting wonder of a phone and I will call her more often.
Someday, I know I won’t regret it.