Ronita Johnson

When she shared what the year had been like for her. A year of planning, scheduling, knowing, looking forward to doing…and then suddenly without warning an interruption, a major interruption. A film that came over her eye that she tried to wipe away, thinking that it could be captured in a tissue and thrown away like a wild hair caught in the corner and then tossed.

But here she was with the light shining in one eye and then the other; that bright light that illuminates all that we can’t see with the naked eye.  That light of truth that says, I don’t think you’ll be taking a train, or a boat or a plane. I don’t think you’ ll be frolicking with your daughter, your son, your nieces or brother.

And there the suitcases sat.  Full and ready for the journey, wondering to themselves – what happened to her jolly self.  And the clothes – the latest styles of pink and turquoise sat, wondering what happened to her jolly self. You mean we’re not going to be worn?  Oh I can just imagine the chatter that filled each piece of luggage.  And his luggage shouted over to her luggage with a genuine concern “do you all know what’s going on, where is she?”  It’s time to rock and roll!

And there she sat, as the DOC said, “Oh honey you’re not going anywhere.” Not today or tomorrow or next week or next month.  And, Oh, you mean listening to Dallas on the TV – eyes can’t even take looking at that TV screen.

What shock and dismay would befall her.  Not me she would proclaim.   And there she was lying face up and then face down and then face down again. The memories of what was to be danced playfully, messing with her mind- having her think she could be up and at um in no time.  Oh just a little interruption!

UM, I guess it’s time to get traveling insurance. Something I think she never thought would be uttered from her mouth.

But the reality was, time had marched by, what a surprise.  Where had the 80 years gone?  Surely, she thought she would always be able to do whatever she wanted to do anytime she wanted to do it. After all she had her health – all of her health.

And now, one eye seemed blurred most of the time and the other one tired after 20 minutes of trying.  Oh what was to become of all those beloved books!  The freedom that she once knew with her foot on the pedal, as she lowered down the top of her convertible, while the wind blew her golden brown hair, this she would not know again.

She was dependent – oh what a thought, to think that she actually needed others.

While ending her recent visit, her daughter made a quick stop and gifted her with a necklace full of bubbles.  She wore them on her neck and blew them to others. As she passed them around the circle and we puckered up to blow, we were reminded with the wet residue, of the joy that can come from the tiniest gift of laughter.

And now I am reminded to give back to her what she has given to me over and over again.  Drive over real soon with that top down, pick her up and give her that sensation once again – of the wind blowing in her hair. She’ll probably wear those leather pants; you know the sexy ones!  Make sure I stop just at the right time, so that cute guy in the next lane, the one with the sunglasses looks over at her, and with a smiling glance says “Sweetheart, you are way cool.”

I love you Nancy!