The Official Cry of Distress

By Patti Parish-Kaminski, Publisher

Answering the call with mass procurement.

There is one word in the English language that will stop me dead in my tracks.  Doesn’t matter what I am in the middle of doing, when I hear this word, my head will spin around like Linda Blair in The Exorcist.  The speaker of the word has my complete and undivided attention.

My babies have always called me “Momma.”  Occasionally, I’ll get the “Ma,” typically uttered with irritation, but the vast majority of the time, I’m Momma.  On rare occasions, both Kass and Kolt will call me something else, and it’s absolutely their distress cry.  It’s like watching the Nat Geo channel and hearing a lost cub cry for its lioness momma.  I know there’s a problem when I hear the word, and I come in roaring.

The week after Derecho hit Houston, which is an entirely different subject because “derecho” means “right” in Spanish.  First, we have El Nino, now Derecho.  Really?  Why are we associating bad weather with a specific culture?

I digress.  So, the week after the wild windstorm, baby boy was covered up.  He was without electricity for four days, braved the storm as it was destroying his neighborhood, was working long hours, was dealing with storm clean up daily – and most important of all, he was having guests over the weekend for his 25th birthday.  Something that should be joyful, yet was looming large with his extended to-do list thanks to Derecho.

It was mid-week when he called, and the very first word he uttered was the official cry of distress: “Mommy.”  At that point, I was akin to an emergency responder.  Kolt had called 911, and “Mommy” was on – locked and loaded – answering the cry of distress with Mommy’s battle cry.  I was ready to take out whatever or whoever was making my baby issue an SOS.

Over $250 later and a solid two hours of my life I will never get back in the grocery store – a venue that I particularly dislike – I had filled up Bonita’s trunk.  Kolt had lost the entire contents of his refrigerator thanks to Derecho.  I then packed up the cold goods in my fridge and procured a cooler for the case of beer, which absolutely would not fit in my fridge.  Apparently, one cannot purchase beer that is not chilled at the grocery store, and equally as perplexing, the bubbly brew must then be kept cool and not at room temperature.  Who knew?

I baked a double batch of brownies – it being baby boy’s birthday and all – reloaded the groceries and drove them 45 minutes to my baby. I did not unload them again.  A “Mommy” can only do so much.  See y’all next week – on the porch!

Patti Parish-Kaminski

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