God who abides fully in the present,
I keep recalling that moment in my mind.
You know the one – the phone call.
The five thirty am buzzing which jolted me awake,
Wondering why and who and why again as I stirred from sleep.
Deciding I needed to pick it up because five-one-three numbers at five-thirty aren’t wrong numbers.
Thinking that it was him just calling because he was awake in his room,
And for one split second not wanting to deal with an early morning conversation.
For that moment, God, I am deeply sorry.
Oh how now I wish it was dad wanting a five-thirty am phone conversation.
How I would sacrifice an entire night of sleep for that discussion.
How I would rather have heard his voice saying “I just wanted to call” rather than the nurse informing me “his condition has changed.”
How I would have rather heard his voice asking me if I was awake rather than a stranger ask me if I wanted him intubated.
How that moment the last remaining garments of childhood which I still wore my soul stopped fitting. How the tables turned and I was the one who made the decisions about his well being.
How the summertime of my life ended and the gray days of autumn begun. How the warmth of daylight turned into the cold shadows of night.
Yes, God, that moment turned into all of this for me. Innocence lost. Childhood firmly found in the rearview mirror. Daughterhood shifted.
God, there is little you can do for me to change my memory of that moment. But, if you can, fill my soul with a little additional peace each time I remember it.
In time, this moment will lose some of its intense chill. And maybe I’ll find a new level of innocence.