Today was the day.

He knew he knew me but still, he didn’t really know who I was. He couldn’t say my name. He couldn’t say what our relationship was. I wasn’t as shocked as I expected to be when it actually happened. I knew the day would come sooner or later.

Today was sooner rather than later.

Peter hasn’t been able to say our family’s names for some time — Carolynn, Leslie, Samantha, Jeremiah, Martin, Bill — though he recognizes them when he sees them or gazes, as he often does, at their pictures.“How are things in England these days?” he asked. Uh oh, I thought.

What I should have done is explain some little thing about the Brexit crisis. He wouldn’t have understood, but he would have listened, interested. But I said, “I don’t live in England, Peter. I’ve never lived in England.” His eyebrows shot up, and he shook his head as if to clear the cobwebs. His thoughts looped as he asked over and over how things were in England. Finally, leaning close, I asked, “Do you know who I am?”

He bluffed. “Course I do. I could never forget you!

“Mm-m, do you know my name, what we are to each other?”

He gazed into the distance as if the answers might be written in the mist outside. I said his first wife’s name and asked if he thought I was her. He shook his head, but he did ask where she was. I said I only knew she’d moved back to England years ago. “The two of you came here, to Virginia, in 1968,”  I said.

“Well where were you then?”

“In Arizona, getting ready to move to Virginia.” He shook his head again. I was sure he knew he knew me, but he couldn’t say my name. I turned it into a game. “Am I your sister? Your niece? Your grannie? Your mum?” He laughed at my silliness and said no to each question. Then, inspired, I said, “Peter and…J-o-o-o-o-o…?”

He grinned. “JUDY!” His exaggerated wink tried to tell me he knew my name all along.

He hugged me tight and we laughed together.

[The “today” in this post is actually yesterday. I wrote this late last night, but refined it today. Changing all the todays to yesterdays only works in the song.]

Header: Scene outside my window today.

25 thoughts on “Today was the day.

  1. For Judy, my constant inspiration, from your friend Ellen.

    Memories…so selective.
    We don’t choose what persists
    And what fades into oblivion.
    What prompts a reminder?
    A song, a smell, a gesture, a picture, a story
    Can bring back a memory so vivid.
    Insistently collect the sparks that inspire them,
    The memories of simpler times.

  2. It is tough, reinforces what you already know. You’re so good at turning it into a “game” that he won, both of you with your shared sense of humor. How lucky he is to have you Judy!

  3. You did a good job turning this situation, tough as it must have been, into another interesting read. I admire you, but then I always have.

  4. Even knowing the time would come it still takes you a bit by surprise. Glad to see you made a game of it and got the twinkle in Peter’s eye and a big hug. You are so good at making lemonade out of lemons.

  5. ✨Only in the darkness can you see the stars. How lucky we are to have you guiding us through this heartbreaking journey 💕💫

  6. Once again, thank you for sharing. I suspect that same day will come very soon for my Mom, as she recently asked me, “Now who is your father?” It stings even though you think you’re prepared. Thinking of you.

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