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I talk to my grandmother when I'm annoyed.


My sweet, adorable, maternal grandmother died in 1986, when I was fourteen years old.

When I was very young -- in the 70s and early 80s -- I spent a lot of time with her.  When I slept over at her apartment, she let me stay up late so we could watch the Lawrence Welk Show, followed by The Love Boat, followed by Fantasy Island. She fed me the best snacks.

I thought I was totally getting away with something back then -- I feel mischievous just thinking of it now.

I talk to my grandmother all the time.  (Yeah, I know.  That sounds a little bat-shit crazy.  But I kind of like my crazy.  I think it fits me like an old pair of comfortable jeans.)

I definitely love the conversations I have with my grandmother when I'm annoyed.

You've already figured out how old I am from the above story about my childhood (and the mention of Lawrence Welk -- Gram loved Lawrence Welk.)

Now that you know how old I am, you won't be that surprised to learn that I was twenty-nine years old when I got my first cell phone.  That was some time ago. . .

So recently, I open up the Verizon Wireless bill (I have two older children now -- four people on the plan and multiple devices) and I think to myself, "holy shit, I used to live on this much money a month.  Now it's the freaking cell phone bill."

Of course, when I have that thought, I feel annoyed.

And my grandmother says, "sweetie, if you don't want the cell phone bill, get rid of the devices."

And I'm like, "oh, I could never do that.  We really need our phones."

And she says, "You really don't.  You don't need them at all.  I lived a whole life without them."

Me:  "But it's different now.  Y'know, I always need to get in touch with someone, or check my email.  Not having a cell phone would really be inconvenient."

Gram:  "So. . . you want the phone, and you can afford it?  Or, will you and the kids starve to death if you pay that cell phone bill?"

Me:  "Noooo. . of course we won't starve."

Gram: "It's super convenient to have AND you have the money to pay for it?  So, why are you choosing to be annoyed?"

Hmmm.  She's right.

I am choosing that feeling.  And I'm acting like it has been dropped on me from some external force.

But it hasn't, and I could choose a different feeling if I wanted to.

When I choose to be annoyed with the cell phone bill, I just get get better at being annoyed with the cell phone bill. . .

. . . and the National Grid bill.  (Please don't ask me how much my National Grid bill is every month.  I swear my children walk around the house and turn things on constantly.)

Gram is right.  I could choose to feel differently.

She's usually right about this stuff.

Talk to you soon, my friend.  Take good care until then. . . and go hug your grandmother if you can.

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