Posts Tagged ‘over-tired’

Too Busy Being Present

January 13, 2014

To think about myself.

That is until I was falling asleep in a metal folding chair snug between my mom and my sister.

Whoa.

I really almost did nod off there, losing complete track of what was being said or where I was, except, there, in between the two of them, no need to be anywhere else, no need to go anywhere, be anything, aside from present and accounted for.

Which I managed, somehow, despite the long delay at the gate in SFO.

Despite the seating I was in, smack dab in the middle of the row just in front of the emergency exit, ie, according to the stewardess who I flagged down passing like a ghost ship in the night, lights just so dim on the plane.

“Oh, no, those seats don’t recline,” she said in a whisper, “exit aisle.”

Oof.

And new babies.

Poor little babies who don’t know how to pop their own little ears when the plane descends from above the sky to circle down to the landing.

One little girl, couldn’t have been more than three weeks, maybe four, and the wailing so piercing.

But I did drift off, in and out, absurdly grateful for my little velvet neck pillow wrapped around my neck, giving me something to snuggle into and fall into sleep with.

Why have I gone so long without?

Never again.

That freaking pillow is coming on all planes, trains, and automobile that I happen to travel in.

I was able to sleep, despite the non-reclining seat and the howling missives of babies, hungry or tired or overwhelmed by the turbulence.

I nodded off.

Until I was awaken again.

This time with the announcement, “is there a doctor on the plane, is there a doctor, please raise your hand now, your assistance is needed,” urgent and disembodied from the flight deck over the speakers.

Did I just hear that?

“Is there anyone with medical expertise on the plane, any doctor, nurse, EMT, please raise your hand, there is a medical emergency on the plane that needs addressing,” the voice continued in a more urgent manner.

We are all going to die.

The pilot is ill.

The plane is going down.

And I thought, you know, I can accept that.

I’m cool.

Just a little tired, don’t mind me.  Can I take a little disco nap before we descend into the inferno?

Then, we were really descending, but in actuality, and the sun was pushing in under the window shades, a bright, limnal light that shaved away at the sleep in my brain and woke me up enough to deplane, groggy and needing the bathroom in the terminal.

Bypass that first bathroom always flocked with the newly de-planned, please, folks, don’t you know to go to the next bathroom in the next terminal, no lines.

I took care of a full bladder, washed up, straightened up myself and went out to forage in the land of food that is not the best for me to eat, but since I have to be here for another two hours, I better get some sustenance.

One Naked juice later, a banana, and some cashews and a large coffee, I was ready to sit and attend to my morning routine.

It may not have felt like a real night of sleep, but it was morning and in the morning I write.

I felt a bit anachronistic sitting there with my Claire Fontaine notebook and my ink pen, scribbling away while surrounded by the Iphones, Ipads, Ipods, smart phones, androids, tablets, cords and chargers and other effluvia of the technological set sitting out the delayed flight connection as well.

But I did it anyway.

Then I opened up my own laptop, pulled out the charger and check my schedule on-line, noting that it still said  I was on my way to Orlando and in fact, was just about to land.

Uh no.

But I did get there and I did sit in the back of the car, warm, with the windows rolled down, grateful to be moving in another plane of motion other than up into the sky, rolling down the Florida parkway, hitting the tolls, heading North ward, avoiding that great suck of a black hole, Disney World, by a few miles and exits, until we hit Leedsburg and I saw my sister.

Pretty good that.

“You’re so little!” She said to me engulfing me in a hug.

“I don’t remember you being this small,” she said with a smile.

Hahahahaha.

REALLY.

I am the shortest in the family and no one, no one believes that.

Here, home, with family, the only family I feel comfortable wearing platform shoes in, because I still won’t be the tallest.

Mom and sis and her husband and youngest daughter, my mom’s partner, and I, a friend of mom’s and the smallest little dog I have ever seen, really when did mom get into tea-cup dogs? Pile into two cars and I really am not the tallest and it’s pretty funny.

Well, ok, my eleven year old niece is not taller than me, but you know what, she’s going to be.

My other niece, who is 21.

21!

“Can you believe she’s twenty-one,” my sister said, showing me a recent photograph.

“Yes,” I said, but honestly, it feels like yesterday she was this high and we were going for a ride on the carousel at Ella’s Deli on East Washington and eating ice cream Sundays in the main parlour, sitting perched on the old-fashioned chairs, watching the marionettes float over the tightrope wire that raveled just under the ceiling.

That niece.

That niece is 6’2″.

I really am the shortest.

But we all fit.

All together now, like a pair of gloves you think you’ve lost that suddenly, magically appear out of now where in oddest place, the bottom of an old utility drawer and you take them out and they fit, molded to your palm, a forgotten friend.

Maybe they are a little dusty, a little frayed, but they fit, soft, smooth, and perfect on your cold tired hands.

Her hand, in mine, in the dark, we both sat in the back seat of the car returning from an evening with fellows celebrating anniversaries.

I had all the celebration my over-tired self could handle.

And it was there.

Just there.

In the palm of her sweet hand in mine.

Nice to see you again.

And though I may be shorter.

You still are my little sister.

You always will be.

Love you.

Always will.

Never stopped.

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