I like to entertain my friends with the funny stories and situations my 93-year-old grandmother (she turned 93 yesterday!) has decided to grace our presence with. She is a) hard of hearing, and b) willing to say whatever is on her mind, which can be a dangerous combination …
The problem with writing about the things Mia (as all the grandkids call her) says, is that most of it is very politically incorrect …
I have mentioned the time she leaned over to my sister in the waiting room at the doctor’s office and said quite loudly, “Have you ever seen so many fat people in your life?” I have told you about the time she tried to incite a gang war against her at the light rail station. And Kevin has told you about her adventures in sponge bathing at the hospital.
Today I will tell you another story regarding her stay at the hospital a couple of years ago. She needed to get a pacemaker, and Dad and aunt Josie and myself were waiting in the hospital room during her surgery. After the surgery was complete, she was in the recovery area of the hospital and we were allowed to go visit her.
We walked briskly back to where she was, eager to see for ourselves that she was doing well. She was about 91 at the time, after all. I rounded the corner first, and this is what I saw: My grandmother, with a scheming look in her eye, trying to get the orderly’s attention to tell him something. He had his back to her and didn’t notice what she was doing. I heard her say something to the effect of “my family is coming and …” – and then she saw me. Made eye contact with me. Then quickly shut her eyes, leaned her head back, and stuck out her tongue.
Dad and Josie were right behind me, and Josie said “Mom? … Oh, she’s still asleep.”
“No she’s not,” I said. “She’s teasing.”
No one really paid too much attention to me – the focus was, of course, on Mia. Notably, the orderly didn’t hear me or if he did, didn’t pay attention. At this point, he turned around to face her, and instantly went into panic mode. “Mrs. Davis, Mrs. Davis, can you hear me?”
“She’s teasing,” I said again, but a little weaker this time – she was teasing, right?
And she was. Her eyes popped open then, full of apologies to the orderly who was probably about to call a code blue or something! He gave her a mini-lecture (“Don’t scare me like that!” ) and she explained that she’d been trying to tell him what was up but then she saw us coming and had to start the rouse without him.
Moral of this story: If you’re going to play dead at the hospital, make sure you don’t give the orderly a heart attack.