Sometimes when I’m driving home and I hit an unexpected speed bump or pothole, I’ll worry that maybe I hit a small animal, or even a person, and didn’t realize it. Then I will have the worst anxiety EVER until I either (a) take a Xanax at home and fall asleep or (b) drive back to check that it was only an unexpected speed bump or pothole. So far, it’s always been an unexpected speed bump or pothole, but I can’t seem to ever fully convince myself of that to relieve the anxiety because I know that the one time that I do, it’ll actually be someone’s kitten or puppy or child that was playing in the street at 12:30am.
That story sort of relates to today, when Nancy (my mother) came home from work with a rolled ankle. This threw me into a tizzy and I started raising my voice at her when she was walking on it, for which she proceeded to reprimand me, saying only, “Well, I have to go to the bathroom, Katy.” [Good point, Nancy. Good point.]
Then, as I was leaving the house to go to dinner (not with a dude from the online dating world, because we all know how well that’s going), I made sure that she was fed, that all the dishes had been done, that she had both cigarettes and ashtray (as well as remote control) on the table next to her, and that her cell phone was plugged in, charging, and ready to be used, should she fall down and not be able to get up. The last thing I said to her before I left the house was, “Make sure you take the cell phone with you if you get up for anything, even if you need to get a glass of water. I love you, goodbye.” Nancy’s reply? “Help me! I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!” Alas, I am my mother’s daughter.
Well, you can imagine my surprise when I returned home and Nancy was in her bedroom, asleep, while the cell phone lay exactly where I left it, plugged in and ready to be used in case of an old-person emergency like falling down and not being able to get up. You would think I’d be okay with this, relieved that she made it to her bedroom without any calamities that called for the use of a cell phone, but am I? Oh no. I’m going to spend the rest of the night worrying that, should something like this occur in the future, she won’t follow my advice and have a cell phone with her and I’ll receive a call in the middle of the night [GOD FORBID] saying that Nancy was found in her house, having fallen and been unable to get up, half-starved and crying and all alone.
I may or may not be looking up the price of the Philips Lifeline right now. Hey, I gave her the chance of being cool and just having a cell phone like everyone else; I’m sorry it had to come to this.
PS: I don’t know about kittens or puppies or childrens that play in the street at 12:30am anymore, but you probably shouldn’t let me near them since I’m very obviously kind of nuts.