Another Ronan of the Day

I always wear my hair up, because I have an awful habit of twirling and biting it when it’s clean and down.   It’s a sensory thing. 

Ro can’t stand it…

Ronan:  MOM!  Stop biting your hair!!!

Mama:  Why Ro?

Ronan:  Because it’s really bad for you, Mom!

This is the same child whom I thought might never even refer to me as “Mom”.  Ever.  I waited soooo long to hear even that, and when he actually started to call me Mom, I thought I would die of happy.

To hear him say something like this is so surreal.  It makes me cry.

Pithy, and true.

The Ronan of the Day

After inspecting the contents of our under-the-sink bathroom cabinets (which he has memorized)…

Ronan:  (panicked)  MOM!!!

Mama:  (equally panicked)  What Ro?????!!!!

Ronan:  Where are your Ultra Thin Maxi Pads????!!!!

Hmm.  Ro, I don’t think you really need to worry about those.

Just my Ten Cents.

I’m rushing to pick up my boys.  I have 10 minutes to get to their school, and it takes me seven.  I’m a little anxious that I might be late, but not too worried, since I always make it there in under ten.

I’m nearing the end of South Street, when I see this ancient woman standing almost in the middle of the road trying to flag down a driver.  Nobody is stopping…and I am nearing her, closer, closer, anybody, anyone?  Bueller?  Bueller? 

Damn!  I have to stop!  I won’t sleep tonight if I don’t!

Hesitantly, I edge over to the side of the road and roll down my window.

Mama:  “Are you okay?  Do you need some help?”

Methuselah’s wife:  “Oh, Jesus!  Oh, Jesus!”

She opens my passenger’s door…and…she’s…IN!

Brain 2000:   Holy crap!  Holy crap!  Old lady in the car!!  Old lady!! Old lady!!  The old lady just got in my car!!  Now, what the hell do I do?!!  I have to get my kids!  My boys are going to be alone at pick up!!  I can’t pick them up with Memaw in the car!! I’m going to be late!!  Ooh, I really want one of Noni’s doughnuts… How do I get her out!!  What the hell does she want?  And for the love of all that is holy, WHAT IS THAT SMELL???

I start by asking her if she is lost.

Meme:   I don’t know!  I don’t know where I am!  What’s that street say?

Mama:  South Street.

Oldest woman alive:  Oh, I don’t know that street!  Oh, this car is so warm!  I love this!  What’s going on?

Hmmm…

Mama:  What’s your name?

Great Granny:   Lil.

Mama:  You have your purse, maybe you have some ID, and we can see where you live?

She pulls out her wallet.  It’s empty, except for a lonely dime.

Lil:  I have this dime.  It’s all I have.  Will that help?  What’s your name honey? You are such a lovely girl. What is your name? What a good girl you are. Where are we going?…OH!  I dropped my dime!!  OH NO, OH NO!!

Mama:  (pulling a dime from my car’s change holder) Lil, Lil!  Relax!  Here it is!

She relaxes…

Mama:  My name is Robyn.  Like the bird.

For some Memaw reason, she finds this hysterical, and she laughs like a lunatic on the fringe for 5 straight minutes! 

Hey, I like my name, Grandma!

Lil:  (calm now)  What’s your name, honey?  And where are you taking me?

Mama:  It’s Robyn, Lil.  And we are going to the police station.

Lil:  You’re dropping me off somewhere?  Oh, I don’t like this!  You were a good girl!!

Mama:  No, no.  Lil, I’m taking you to some detectives that can figure out where you live!  I’m not dropping you somewhere.  They’ll help you!

Lil:  Oh, you’re a good girl!  What’s your name, honey?

Oy.  Alzheimer’s is tough.

We pull up to the police station, I lead her inside and explain to the detectives what happened.  They take her into the back and give me a wink and a little laugh as I go.

I have two minutes until dismissal.  It’s all I can think about.

I sprint to my car.

When I sit down in the driver’s seat, after I roll all the windows down, gagging, trying to air out the smell, something shiny catches my eye beside me.  It’s Lil’s dime on the passenger’s seat. 

I’m a little mad at myself now.  I was so intent on handing her off as quickly as possible.  She smelled, I was late, who knew what she was going to do…blah, blah, blah. Here’s a sick, defenseless old woman, obviously suffering from Alzheimer’s, and I know I’m a Mom, and I have to always think about my kids first…but sometimes you have to slow down, remember that we are all human beings.

Even  10,000 year old Memaws with fading minds.  Especially, 10,000 year old Memaws with fading minds.  Judging from the smell, and the fact that she was walking into moving traffic, someone wasn’t caring for Lil the way she deserves.

My kids are young and healthy, and they were waiting for me in their warm school, with their lovely teachers – just a phone call and a few minutes away if I was going to be late. 

So, if you are rushing some day, and you see a Memaw or a Pepaw wandering around looking confused, if you see a child looking lost and alone in Target, or if you see a Mother with her children broken down on the side of the road, etc. etc. 

You know what to do. 

And believe me, I’m reminding myself of this as much as I am reminding you. 

 

That’s just my ten cents.

 

p.s. The next day, while I was out on a walk on the same street, I was chased by a flock of angry wild turkeys.  No joke.  What is the universe trying to tell me, man!!??

p.p.s.  If I am ever wandering around in traffic without a coherent thought in my ancient head, smelling like pee pee extreme, please take a Louisville slugger to my noggin.  Don’t bother going the humane Kevorkian route -just the bat, and quickly.

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