Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt
The seemingly simple fact of her husband’s death was inconceivable to Ellie. Here she stood, on the precipice of widowhood, looking down into what was an unaccountably bleak future.
“I wish I’d died with him,” she thought. “I wish it had been a car accident, and we could have died together just as we’ve lived together for nearly 50 years.”
Always able to make quick, confident decisions, Ellie found herself wandering in a desert of indecision. She couldn’t even decide which shoes to wear, dithering back and forth between two different styles.
People were forcing so many decisions on her. They had barely given her time to breathe after Tom died, acting as if her own body hadn’t been sliced right in half, and every nerve ending was screaming with pain.
“Are you going to sell the house? You don’t need all that room. You need to give Dad’s clothes to the Good Will or something. What are you going to do with all his tools?”
On and on it went, and her children seemed to think she ought to make these decisions RIGHT NOW! Nothing, absolutely nothing, had to be done right this minute. Tom had been buried less than 24 hours ago, and she hadn’t slept at all in that time. She was aching with weariness, loss, and confusion. And her kids were treating her as if she was no longer a viable entity; like they had to tell her what to do, as if she were just a baby.
She came out of her reverie with a snap. One of her sons had practically yelled, “MOM!” Pay attention here, would you? There’s a lot that needs to be done!”
She stood, and even though she was quaking inside, there was fire in her eyes.
“You all need to go home and leave me alone. I don’t want to make any decisions today, and maybe not tomorrow or next week or next year. You’re all being incredibly rude, and you didn’t learn that from your father and me! Stop treating me as if I’m an imbecile who no longer has a brain.
“I’ll make decisions when I’m good and ready. And I’m telling you, the more you push me the harder I’ll resist. Now, I want you all to go home. Leave. Take your superior attitudes with you. I’ll call you when I need you, and you’d better have settled down before that happens.
“Keep in mind that I’m the one who reared every one of you. I taught you to use a spoon and a fork, and I taught you to tie your shoes. I cared for you when you were sick, and I listened when you had a problem. You didn’t think I was an idiot then, and I’m not an idiot now.
I’m going to bed. Make sure you lock the door on your way out.”
Shocked and speechless, they all gathered their coats and their children, avoiding each other’s eyes. Finally, as they were filing out the door, the eldest daughter said, “I don’t understand why she was so upset. After all, we’re just trying to help!”