Gregarious Son and I had dinner tonight with good, good friends. The son and Chicago Son were best friends for most of their growing up years. His mom is one of my very best friends. His dad has faced serious, almost impossible, health challenges for 15 years. The kind that remind you every day that there is nothing remotely fair about life.
In the kitchen, my friend and I talked about the day we learned that Chicago Son had died. I was on retreat, four hours from home. She says that I called and, seeing my name on the caller ID, she answered with delight. We had been meaning to get together for weeks. I said, "Are you alone?" and she immediately knew something was terribly wrong. He husband was out back, and so she said, "Just tell me," and I did.
"You were competely calm and articulate," she said. "And you asked me to go over to your house to be with your husband, and I said that I would go as soon as I got hold of my son. And then you just started screaming."
I don't remember that call at all.