The other night, in lieu of going to the gym, my hubby and I decided to take a brisk stroll around our neighborhood in the cool night air. While walking, we talked about the kids, work issues and our upcoming anniversary vacation. “By the way your dad called…” My hubby said. “Yes, I know, I stopped at his house on my way home” I replied and then began telling him about my visit.
My dad tends to place his kids in categories for himself. For instance, my sister Ann Marie, after many years of working for him, has become his caregiver. Whereas I am the electronics guru; simply because I used to sell electronics (TV’s, stereos, computers, etc) back in the day. Whenever anyone has a trouble operating his TV or DVD or phones; I’m the one who gets called. Last week my sister decided to buy him a new set of phones. When I stopped by to hook up and program them, I found he needed an additional receiver and ordered him one; which arrived in Monday’s mail.
“Marsh, before you leave, I need you to show this old dog how to operate this new phone,” My dad said and then sat down at the kitchen table. Then together, we went over the basics he needed to work the phone. “Dad, how old were you when you met mom?” I asked once we finished the phone lesson. “I’ve told you this before…” He began to protest before he continued his love story. “…I met her when we were in highschool… I was a senior she was maybe 16. We didn’t date though. While in college I needed a date for something and my buddy (Uncle Ray) hooked me up with a girl–who turned out to be his younger sister. She was barely 17 years old if that”. He explained. “So that was it then?” I asked, knowing full well my mom dated other men while she dated my dad. “Well…not quite.” He replied. “Well sure, you had the war interrupt your courtship too,” I said. Nodding his head, he paused and then said, “After I returned from the war, I think I had a touch of that PTSD, but we didn’t talk about it back then. You know I saw buddies killed, wounded and worse…” He explained. In any case, your mom and I went out for a while but got into a huge fight and broke up. I have no memory what the fight was about. But I didn’t see her for a few months”. “How long were you in the navy?” I wondered. “Two horrible years” He replied before continuing.
“Do you remember your Aunt Rosie (his older sister)? She used to work at the government center as a secretary and your mom, at that time worked at a bank downtown. Well, Aunt Rosie walked over to the bank on her lunch period and said “Joyce, Tom is miserable without you. Could you give him one more chance, please?” He laughed at the memory. “If it weren’t for your Aunt, you wouldn’t be here,” He said smiling. “Yeah you’d have someone else programming your phones…” I replied and together we laughed.
“Can you imagine my mom talking to her mom about the pros and cons of getting back with him?” I asked my husband as we walked along; verbally imagining the discussion as we went.
Joyce: “He wants everything done his way…”
Mother: He’s a doctor.”
Joyce: He thinks he’s always right.
Mother: He’ll make a good provider for his family.
Joyce: His mother and sisters wait on him hand and foot..
Mother: He’ll be a good husband and father.
Mother: Are you attracted to him?
Mother: Well then let’s get you two back together and set the date. Remember dear, he’s a doctor.
My husband laughed and then he looked back at me oddly. “You and your mom didn’t have a similar conversation did you…?” Laughing I replied, “Hardly. You ain’t no doctor…” “Wow, that makes me feel so much better…” He replied and we laughed. “We did have a talk about attraction though babe…” He stopped and looked back at me for a moment before adding, “Seriously?” “Yep…but I think after 25 years we’ve answered that question…” We both smiled and nodded our heads in agreement as we made our way toward home, together.