I was in Payless yesterday looking for sneakers that didn’t have Hannah Montana’s face on the side, or were pink, or were “MOM” shoes, whatever THAT means. It was an impossible mission as Hannah Montana has taken over the World, the only color all the OTHER girls wear is PINK, and anything else is more than ugly which somehow equates to being MOM-LIKE.
Then in the shoe-store-silence, a muffled ringing sound. I looked at Gina. She looked at me. The cashier looked at me. And then I realized that I’d accidently left my new cell phone in my bag after the Fair. This new cell phone experience is overwhelming. I like to be UNAVAILABLE. I like for people to think that I’m doing something so super important that I can’t talk to them right now. I like to hide when my child visits the school nurse for the 20th time this week and it’s easier for the school to call me and ask me what to do about the paper cut on their tongue.
I answered it ONLY because everyone was looking at me.
Haley’s voice sounded far away, another cell phone feature I hate.
“Mom, can I jump off the footbridge on my way home?” she asked.
“Aren’t you wearing your green plaid pajama pants?” She’d already lost one pair of pants in the river this week. That I had to stick my hand inside of to turn right side out before washing them. The thought of it makes me cringe.
“Yes,” she said.
“Then no, you can’t jump in the river,” I said and hung up.
Now, was that conversation important enough to call me when I really just want to hide out in the mall and avoid Hannah Montana? That’s difficult enough without being distracted by the ringing in my bag.
And would Haley have jumped off a bridge if she hadn’t been able to reach me?