When Amelia Calls
You try to muster enough energy to get off the sofa and get a frozen yogurt. New flavors every week. The whirling churn of the clothes jumbled in the dryer. The neighbors’ clinking glass mobile as it bends and smashes against the house. The marbled eyes of Muffin perched on the fence, batting at the mobile, intense.
Phone rings, you answer, knowing only your sister would call at this inopportune moment.
“Men are so full of shit.”
Say: Thanks. You feel mis-represented.
“You aren’t really a man in the traditional sense.”
Wonder if she means you’re more like a woman. Or if she refers to the familial fact that you were supposed to be born a girl. The doctors said so.
Say: You sound upset. Mean: must we get into this again?
“I’m just tired of this. He was supposed to call, then come over. I could have done a million things. Damn, it’s the same old story. Instead I sit at home and transfer old names into a new address book. I’m not even in touch with half of these people.”
Think: I don’t know how you put up with it, but you do. You have.
Say: What’s in it for you?
“What?” She sounds startled, protective. “Well, I mean, he’s charming. he’s usually very thoughtful.” Emphasis on usually.
You are thinking this is the type of display of wishy-washyness that you’ve become accustomed to. “Amelia, does his wife know?”
She says “of course” a little too quickly.
“Well, you know about his wife.”
“I’m not sure what you mean by that.”
This is how our conversations go now that we’re adult.