October 18, 2016

Me: How are you feeling?

Maga: Not on top of the world. I’m sorry my TV is so loud. I don’t know how to turn it down.

Me: It’s not too loud.

Maga: Any more trips coming up?

Me: Actually, yes. I leave Monday and return on a Friday. I’ll be sending you a postcard for every Tuesday phone call I miss.

Maga: That would be nice. You leave on Thursday?

Me: Monday. I’ll call you from the airport so it’ll minimize our time between calls.

Maga: And you come back on Monday?

Me: Friday.

Maga: I’m sorry my TV is so loud. I don’t know how to turn it down.

Me: Is there a button called VOL?

Maga: COL?

Me: V as in Victor or volume. There should be a + and – button.

Maga: Oh, why yes. There is.

Me: Push the – button.

Maga: When?

Me: Right now.

Maga: Oh, I think that worked. Thank you for explaining that to me!

Me: And when you want the TV loud again, push the + button.

And then we went over the itinerary of my upcoming trip a few more times because she somehow had gotten a hold of a pen and paper.

Maga: They must think highly of you to send you on your own.

Me: I hope so. I work hard.

Maga: You leave on Friday?

Me: Monday.

Her worrying over my itinerary made me feel like I was part of the in crowd because I’ve only ever heard her worry so hard about my mom and my Aunt J’s travel schedules.

Maga: And you come back on Tuesday?

Me: Friday. Just in time to vote!

Maga: Oh, yes. It’s terribly important to vote.

Me: It sure is. Who are you voting for?

Maga: I’m going to vote for the lady. I’ve never voted Democratic in my life, but Trump is just the pits. I don’t like him at all.

Me: I agree. Hillary for the White House.

Maga: I’ve voted Republican my whole life, but not this time. Let’s hope it works.

I’m with her.


October 13, 2016

Me: Hi, Maga. It’s Abby.

Maga: Abby, dear. Hi! Hello! Has it been a week already? You know I’m in a rehab facility, right?

Me: Yes, I know and no, it hasn’t been a week. Today is Thursday.

Maga: You’re calling on a Thursday? Oh how wonderful! Did anything exciting happen in the two days since we talked?

Me: Nope. I’m fighting a cold, so I’ve been laying low. I think it was the plane I was on last weekend. They’re so full of germs.

Maga: Oh, yes, they are! I used to wear a mask occasionally. It would depend on where I was going or where I was coming from or what the season was. It was sort of embarrassing to wear it, you know.

Me: Did Jobo ever say anything when you wore it?

Maga: Oh, no. He said nothing. He was too kind. This rehab center is the pits.

Me: Does it make you miss Lowry? (The care center she moved into in July, which she doesn’t like.)

Maga: Oh yes. Lowry looks so good to me now. I don’t know a soul here.

Me: My mom will be there in a few hours. Early in the morning.

Maga: Yes! She will. Do you know if she changed her plans to come out here?

Me: She did, yes, but she wants to visit you and help you get better. I wish I could too.

Maga: Oh, so do I. I’d love to see you. How is she getting here from the airport?

Me: She’ll either get a ride with C or maybe rent a car. I’m sure she has a plan.

Maga: Yes. I’m sure she has a plan. Your mom is very smart. She has good plans most of the time.

Me: Did she get that from you or Jobo?

Maga: Probably, Jobo. He was very smart. He did well at everything he attended to. Have you moved yet?

Me: Oh, no. Probably not until December. There’s so much to do before then.

Maga: Do you have all the furniture you need?

Me: *laughter* Absolutely not. It’s going to be bare bones for a long time because all my money is going into buying the condo.

Maga: Maybe you could get some folding chairs. That’ll make you more comfortable. I’m so happy you called because I am so lonely.

Me: Me too. I mean I’m glad I called not that I’m happy you’re lonely.

Maga: *talks over me* Not that you’re happy I’m lonely. I know what you meant, dear.

Switching topics a mile a minute, distraction by the Broncos playing San Diego, finishing my sentences, it’s good to have my Tuesday night girl back (even on a Thursday).

two babies and a condo

October 13, 2016

Mac3 doesn’t (yet) have an extensive vocabulary, but her curiosity is endless, especially when riding in the car. She faces backwards while her older siblings (Big Mac and Bubba Mac) ride forwards. The inferiority of her positioning has led to a continual stream of “Whazthat?” after every strange noise and bump.


Since her eyes can’t see what her ears can hear, she questions everything, which last weekend led me down a path of answering her every 5-15 seconds, and of using my hearing more acutely. It was a fun exercise using my senses in a different way to figure out what she might have heard, but come on, Mac3, windshield wipers sound the same every single time!

Yes, of course, I was suckered into answering every single “Whazthat?” because having her communicate with more than just pointing and screeching was a true delight.

Later that weekend, I got to meet RJS, my college roommate’s four month old who is impressively alert and attentive to her surroundings. She and I had a staring contest for probably 7 minutes straight while I spoke quietly to her about life and the future and the present and boys and food and dates and football and our surroundings and she never broke eye contact once. It was strange and amazing. I believe she could see through my words and was judging me based on the tone behind them.


Or maybe she was just egging me on to see how long I would talk.

Either way, she let me hold her during a variety of outings, so I guess I wasn’t found lacking.

My point? Both babies eerily mirror my current mindset as I delve into the world of real estate. After my seventh offer over the course of two plus years, I finally got an acceptance, and now I find myself asking my realtor, my lawyer, my coworker, and my parents WHAZTHAT? about every huge and intricate detail I had no idea existed in home-ownership-dom.

Adulting is scary hard.

Sometimes the answers to my questions are too much and all I can do is steely stare at my surroundings, like RJS. Maybe I’m hoping I can laser beam an answer out of the walls and windows and dormered ceilings.

I haven’t yet found the answers, but they’re letting me move in, so I guess I haven’t been found lacking.


October 11, 2016

A 105 degree fever + a whole host of complications + an extended stay in the ICU and all Maga had to say today was, “What a drag.”

Holding in the laughter irritated my sore throat, but the relief I felt at hearing that familiar annoyance in her tone soothed my worried heart. My calls to her Saturday and Sunday this weekend did little to alleviate my fears of her advanced age.

Today, her voice was more gravelly than usual and her memories of why she was in the hospital non-existent, but she remembered to ask about my big news and she remembered to brag about the ever expanding size of her/our family and she remembered it was Tuesday and she remembered that “Tuesday’s are our day, aren’t they?”

It was all I had dared to hope for all weekend.

Just one more Tuesday conversation where we cover big and little topics, stretching time and repeating words, memories, and themes all while we avoid being alone by being together.


October 4, 2016

“I’m getting older every day.”

“Winter is coming.”

“You sound so calm, cool, collected, and here I am jumping around the room.”

“Moving IS a big deal.”

“If I sound funny tonight, it’s because I am.”

Soundbites from Maga’s side of tonight’s conversation.