Sunday, December 25, 2022

From Blue to Merry in Fifty


By midnight, I knew I was not going to have a restful night’s sleep. I moved to the living room and turned on the TV. I chose a Hallmark type of movie on Prime, and settled in to drift off to slumber-land. Instead of lulling me to sleep, I watched the entire show. It wasn’t the normal girl meets boy, kiss at the end type of movie. At 2:30 this Christmas morning, I was still awake.

I realized that I wouldn’t fall asleep while I was famished, so I trekked to the kitchen for toast and milk. Not long after my early a.m. snack, I fell asleep.

The morning was half finished by the time I pried open my eyes. I thought about turning on the Christmas lights, and thought why bother. As I lay there, Christmases past came marching through my thought stream, and I didn’t even want to get out of bed. I thought about all the big dinners at Virginia’s house, the kids opening their presents, eating dinner at the nursing home with Jim, and waking last year to the sad news that my beloved sister-in-law had died. The sadness just took over.

When I finally dragged myself to an upright position, I grabbed my walker, and headed to the coffee pot. After a couple of cups of java, I went to the laundry room to fold the clothes I dried last night and to put on another load to wash. Then, I bundled up and took the dog out.

Harold was just as lively as I was, and we finally ate breakfast at ten o’clock. Instead of getting brighter, my day just seemed heavier. Bah, humbug, a blue Christmas.

Finally, I called my mom. She, too, sounded a little down. She had turned down all invitations, because it was just too cold outside, and she was home alone. We only talked briefly.

I went back to my chores, but I thought about all those stranded motorists and people spending Christmas at the airport. They had risked it all to see their loved ones for Christmas. I thought about my mom who lived only 50 minutes away on cleared blacktop highways.

“I’m going to go visit Mom,” I told Harold. “I think all the tires are low on my car.” I knew we had just purchased extra hose so we could air up tires in the garage with the air compressor in the basement. I had to take the hose down the stairs, and needless to say, I “don’t do stairs” well.

After Harold’s detailed instructions as to how to hook the two hoses together, I managed that part of the operation. I had to phone for guidance as to how to turn the darned thing on. “It’s a little wire lever on the grey box.” Well, I’d never have noticed that dinky little wire as the “on” switch.

I came back up from the basement on the chairlift and joined Harold in the garage. I had my first lesson in airing up tires. The problem was the blind was leading the blind, and we couldn’t read the pressure gauge. The solution was for me to get in the car and check it on the display.

Finally, all tires were duly aired and I was ready to rumble. I grabbed my ukulele and Kindle, kissed my hubby, and headed out.

Mom and I spent the afternoon together. First, we visited, then I took out my ukulele. “Sing some of the songs you’ve been working on,” Mom said.

I played a few songs. Mom really liked the Ray Price song. “You should add that one to your list. You really do a good job singing it.”

“Now, it’s your turn,” I said.

“Oh, I can’t sing very good anymore.”

“Doesn’t matter. It’s just us.” I played “Coat of Many Colors,” one of the nursing home favorites. Mom sang the song flawlessly.

I put away my ukulele and prepared to head home. By spending the afternoon together, Mom and I both felt a hundred percent merrier than we had earlier.

I called Mom when I was almost home, because mothers worry. As soon as I walked through the door, the dog met me to let me know she needed some outside time.

As soon as we came inside, I flipped the switch to turn on the Christmas lights. The cheerful twinkling made me smile as I thought of spending Christmas with my mom. Today turned out to be a merry Christmas after all.


Copyright © December 2022 by L.S. Fisher


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