Saturday, October 23, 2010

Welcome, Ghosts - Being 60 (week 25 - by Margaret Ullrich)

I now believe in ghosts.

Up to now I never gave ghosts much thought.  I've always enjoyed watching a spooky movie as much as the next person.  But, I just thought of ghost flicks as wonderful flights of fancy.

You'd think I'd know better.

I was born a Catholic.  Had Dominican nuns as teachers from kindergarten to grade 12.  The good sisters did their job.  I memorized the Baltimore Catechism and learned all about the Communion of Saints and how our dear departed, along with our guardian angel and saints with a vested interest (the ones we were named after) are looking over our shoulders trying to make sure we'd eventually join them.  

I received the sacraments and married in a church wedding ceremony.  

I'm a third Order Franciscan and I volunteer in my parish as a Lector and a Eucharistic Minister. 

I've read saints' biographies.  Lots of them mention having really chummy chats, while alive, with saints who had predeceased them.

Saints don't lie, right?

So... why did it take 60 years for me to believe?

It started with the flu vaccine.  I'd heard on Monday that the vaccination clinics would be running until October 23.  I planned to go early today while I was out getting the newspaper.  I jotted a reminder on the calendar. 

I didn't give it another thought.

My dead Ma did.

First I had a dream of Ma having a cup of tea with me and asking me when I was getting my flu shot.  The dream didn't seem that weird.  Every year, since I turned 50, Ma asked if I'd gotten my flu shot yet.  I just thought I was having a little flashback of when Ma was alive.

I liked the sharing tea part of the dream.  
Much cozier than using the phone which we had to do since she was all the way in New York and I am in Winnipeg.

Then yesterday I had the dream again.

I couldn't shake the feeling that I couldn't wait until tomorrow.  All day the thought was nagging at me.  Finally, at 3:00 p. m., I walked over to the clinic.

Hoo boy...  

There was a large sign.

The clinic in our neighborhood was running to October 22, not October 23.  It would close at 4:00 p. m.

I had 50 minutes left.

I filled out the consent form and waited my turn.  After I received my shot I had to wait 15 minutes, just in case there was an adverse reaction.  As I was leaving I saw 2 people being turned away because they were too late. 

Like I said, I now believe in ghosts.

And I love sharing a cup of tea instead of having to use the phone. 

Bet Ma loves it, too.

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