No, I say and momentarily sink into the notion of doing so. I'll call her later.
I call him and tell him. He doesn't believe me so I say it again. And again. And again until he has no choice but to know it is now true. What will you do? What are your plans? he asks.
I'll do what needs to be done, I say, but today I did this and I wanted to let you know.
I remember how he once said my life could serve as a warning to others but I refused to take him as a prophet.
We'll see what happens, he says.
I call him and tell him. He believes me. Of his two beginnings I am supposed to be the reasonable one. This should be interesting, he says.
There ya' go, I say. Interesting. We'll be okay and it will be interesting.
She answers the phone sounding better than I've heard her in weeks and the guilt makes my mind stutter. I ask about everyone, How is he? How is she? How are they?
Everyone is fine. The ducks are in a row, the toys in their place for one slight moment before I tell her. This is the call I did not want to make and as soon as I say it I am confronted with all the reasons why.
Don't worry, I say.
I can't, she says and begins to talk about why she would.
It's okay, I say, I can handle this.
I know, she says but her voice is changed and I feel the shame of being the one who changed it. If I could live for anyone it would be her and my life would say do not fear.
When we say goodbye I know the fear is a logical response and when I wake up the morning after it will be at least part of what drives me.
If I say, It's gonna be okay, Mom, that has to be the truest thing I have ever said.
If I say, It's gonna be better than you could have ever imagined, that would be my hope.
I have gratitude for what will be.
|It's okay, Billy Sue. Everything will be just fine.|