As previously mentioned, my girl came home with me a few weeks ago for my father's surprise party. We planned to get in Friday night, and the party was on Saturday. My sisters arrived on Thursday and Meredith wondered if having everyone there might ruin the surprise.
"Won't your dad suspect something is going on when all of his girls are home right around his birthday?"
I met up with her in Northampton and we made the road trip to the farm, which was full of good laughs, music on shuffle, and an ongoing discussion about whether or not it's OK to fall asleep in the passenger seat while someone else is driving.
Me: Loving someone means letting them fall asleep while you drive.
Meredith: No it doesn't.
Me: Yes! If you love someone, you let them fall asleep.
Meredith: If you love someone, you should want to stay awake!
We ended up agreeing that it depends on whether or not the driver is tired.
Anyway, in an incredibly rare (read: inconceivable) moment, Meredith grew completely silent when we got off at the exit for my parents' house. Stunned and concerned, (read: She's never silent. Ever.) I asked what was up and she admitted that she was a little nervous. While this was just about the most adorable thing ever, I quickly tried to assure her that there was literally no reason to be nervous. Not one single reason. Here's why:
-My family is crazy.
-My family is loud.
-My family is ridiculous when it comes to food. My mother prepares enough food for one gathering to feed about 600 people. And that is NOT an exaggeration.
-They will start an impromptu dance party at just about any time during the day if an appropriate song is played.
-They're pretty much the nicest people around.
Even after making all these points, she still wasn't buying it, and we drove past the farm in silence. Turning slowly into the driveway, I immediately saw my mother standing on the front porch flapping her arms in the air. I remember thinking, What the hell is she doing? I never told her when we were arriving, there's no way she would be outside waving. Maybe she's swatting at a fly or something.
(She later told me that she sensed our presence with a mother's instinct. Ummm, OK. )
While she stood there flailing, my father came running out into the front yard yelling, "Jessie! Hi girls!!!"
As both Deb and Steve ran to the car, I turned to Meredith and smiled, suddenly realizing that maybe I was the one who should be nervous.
To be continued...