“Are you Andrew’s Mother?”
When was the last time anyone had addressed me like that? I am not exactly sure but certainly no one has, since Andrew’s death.
I was not expecting it. Not at Trader Joe’s, while doing last-minute Christmas shopping. Not when I’d just cut myself unknowingly lifting a broken jar of super fruit organic jam from a shelf. There I was, waiting for someone to give me a wipe or something with which to disinfect the cut. Still shocked, I replayed the scene in my mind’s eyes of me lifting the glass jar and finding that only half came away with “me,” while the other half stayed on the shelf. Immediately the ring finger of my right hand started bleeding.
The captain, as I believe managers are called at Trader Joe’s, didn’t seem too bothered by the fact that a customer, me, had cut herself in his store… that aside…
So, I was waiting for a wipe … a band-aid, when this other young man who had been busy behind the desk, next to the manager, looked up and asked me if I was Andrew’s mother. For several long seconds I was confused. My mind went blank as I tried to place this young man and yes … Andrew too. I know it’s going to sound weird, but … I forgot that Andrew was dead and I looked at the man’s face, then I looked around, as though trying to see where Andrew had …
“I am Michael S…..o,”
“Oh, Michael… I … didn’t recognize you…” When was the last time I’d seen Michael? I don’t know when the last time was, but I remember one of Andrew’s birthday parties, this particular one at Sport’s Time, and Michael was being a bit of a handful and I had… reprimanded him. The scene was so vivid in my mind… all the children at the party so lively… Andrew too…
But then I “remembered.”
“How are you, Mrs. Williamson-Noble?” he asked.
“Do you know about Andrew?” I asked. Tears streaming down my face.
“Yes, yes… I was there with him… I mean, I was a t the funeral.”
It had been a long time since I’d found myself crying in shop. I wasn’t prepared. I was surprised at not been able to stop.
“Do you need medical assistance?” the Manager asked, seeing that I was crying.
I need my son.
p.s. I am not going to proof read what I wrote, I am tired, as well as sad. Good night