Musings from Mama Bird
Last night, I had to discard my cell phone’s texts in order to free up room for more. This isn’t unusual, of course, but I always hesitate trashing text conversations, especially those with my children. They are the main reason my husband and I, several years ago, even bought cell phones and subscribed to unlimited text capabilities. Texting is the only way I can keep track of my baby birds, who thankfully oblige their worrying mama with occasional updates on their whereabouts. I need to know they’re safe and well, especially now since they’ve flown the coop.
My daughter and I trade barbs and inside jokes, and we occasionally share cute pictures of our pets. Whereas a text will randomly appear from my daughter, my son usually only initiates a text conversation when he needs something, so mostly I text him to make sure he’s okay.
I need to add that he’s an awesome young man, but busy. A jazz percussion major, he spends the majority of his weekdays either in class or practicing. He also leads a very busy social life, and I worry about his safety probably more than I should. All right, definitely more than I should. I don’t know if it’s because I majored in journalism in college or am a creative writer, but I have an extremely overactive imagination. You actually wouldn’t believe what goes through my head. All I know is that my mind can come up with some sort of tragic scenario quicker than I can ignite a burner on our gas stove.
A few Sunday afternoons ago, I sent my son the usual two o’clock text. I patiently waited for his response, but when one hadn’t arrived by three, I spiraled into panic mode. I paced. I prayed. I drank a beer. I called and called and called and reached his voicemail twenty-eight times (yeah, I know, pretty crazy, huh), then sent another text, all-caps: ARE YOU ALIVE??? Finally, the long-awaited Hey, Mama lit up my phone.
Yesterday evening, we were engaged in a text conversation about how I wanted him to spend the money he owes us on a camera for himself. (A few years ago, we bought him a nice one for his birthday, but I accidentally dropped it and dinged it up a little. He’s hardly used it since.) The last text he sent was, Thank you so much for doing that. That is so incredible of you. =) I love you, Mama. I typed, I love you too, Benny but I couldn’t send it because my phone’s memory had finally crapped out.
“Delete all of this conversation?” All 130 texts exchanged with my baby these past six days? No. I hated to erase words a Mama Bird longs to hear, but it was more important for me to respond.
Today is Sunday. It is early. It will be hours before I hear from my son, but I’ll wait. I’ll patiently wait. I always do.
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