This morning, I was up bright and early. At 6:15 I left the house to walk, my back exercises, Bible study, and breakfast already completed. Ten minutes later, my phone rang.
By the time I fished it out of my pocket and untangled the iPod ear buds wrapped around it, and I inadvertently pressing several buttons, the caller gave up. The screen said it had been Hiram, so I tried to call back. But somehow I hit the mute button and had to hang up. Eventually he called back, and after explaining I really hadn’t hung up on him twice, he remembered why he called in the first place. Which is a miracle in itself, as the rest of the story proves.
“Did you put muffins in the microwave this morning?” he asked.
“Yes,” I answered, and then added. “And I ate them. For breakfast.”
“Okay,” he said. “So these in the microwave are mine?”
I pondered the question for a moment.
I didn’t remember putting more muffins in the microwave.
But the older I get, the more I forget what I’ve really done.
The older I get, the more I confuse what I only considered doing with what I actually did. And the older I get, the more reality seems like a day dream and the more my day dreams feel like reality.
That’s when I realized Hiram and I have been married for a long time, and he’s rubbing off on me. As my internal dialogue confirms, though I have spent the last 35 years pulling him out of the anti-memory-time-and-space vortex where he lives, growing older is gradually sucking me into it with him. My days as household memory queen are numbered. Maybe even over already.
Hesitatingly, I answered. “I don’t think I would put a second set of muffins in the microwave. And my stomach feels full, so I ate mine.”
“Okay.” His voice remained cheerful and unperturbed. “They must be mine. I just don’t remember putting them there.”
I laughed. “We’re pathetic.”
He agreed, and we both hung up. I slipped the phone back in my pocket and felt something long and stringy wrap around it. I pulled the phone out again, along with a tangle of iPod ear buds.
Where in the world did those come from? I wondered. Then I stuffed them in my pocket and walked down the road cheerful and unperturbed.
Just like my husband.