Later that night I am in my new usual. Curled up on the coach, under blankets, remote control in hand, channel surfing after leaving Mom at the hospital. I have finished my delightful du jour dinner of drive through Taco Bell (one of my favorite guilty pleasures, along with sour cream and onion potato chips and red cherry sour ball candies).
Dad’s health is still the same, not getting better, not getting worse. Mom’s cardiologist at the Mayo Clinic has reinforced my worry, as he has expressed concern about the toll Dad’s health is taking on her. But what can you do? You can’t throw away someone you love because they got sick.
I sigh, on the verge between being bored and tired, when my mobile phone rings. I reach for it; see the Chicago-land area code and pick-up. “Hello?” I ask slowly. My jury is out on this guy. He is very kind and I think there is potential, but I have found it dangerous to swim in known waters, with know shark aunties. A group of connected ladies, a little more “unionized” and lethal than the mob. They know when we “kids” walk before we step, they know when we talk before we speak. Their power I swear some days is second only to God’s. So the issue is, I don’t feel like I can just date Possible-Mate-from-Chicago, the same issue I had with Tapan. I feel like I need to know my own intentions before I continue. It is some strange meal of crazy I choose to cook and then am surprised when I end up eating my own insanity.
“How you doin?” he asks. “I meant to call sooner, to make sure you got home okay in the snow last night. But I didn’t see that you ended up on the news, so I presumed you were okay,” he jokes. Again, I feel pretty confident he’s smiling. So I half-giggle, half-laugh. “I am fine, thanks for asking.” “No, I should have asked you to call. I guess I thought you might call me. But I didn’t want to call too late and wake anyone,” Possible-Mate from Chicago states. Aww, that is rather sweet. And a very interesting comment. I am not used to men (I don't know if Manhattan has skewed my mind set) asking me to call. So I wonder if not sharing your safety status to a man comes off as aloof or independent. Because my girlfriends from Minnesota to Manhattan, we have an unwritten, unspoken understanding to check in on one another and make sure we're all safe.“No, no it’s fine, you can call whenever you like. If I hear my phone I will pick-up. Sometimes I leave my phone downstairs so I miss calls,” I explain.
“So I am in town through Sunday,” Possible-Mate-from-Chicago says. “That is nice,” I reply. “I was thinking about going to the Mall of America on Saturday. Do you have any interest in meeting me there?” Uhm hello, do I ever! I live for malls and museums. I am sooooo an indoor girl! “Sure, what time shall we meet?” I ask calmly. This seems like it could be really uncomplicated, and maybe, just maybe, there is more here to be unearthed.