May 29
8:45 a.m.

“Hi Eunice! It’s Natalie!” I’m still feeling badly about ruining Eunice’s big party.

“Hi Natalie! It’s so wonderful to hear from you. I was wondering how Kate and you are doing. It’s my last day here and I’ve handed over my keys and thinking about the wonderful friends I’ve made in this journey, and obviously I thought about you both.”

Why is God doing this to me? Okay, I’ll give up chocolate for a whole day to signify how truly sorry I am.

“That is so sweet of you,” I cut in the moment Eunice paused to take a breath. “Would you like to go out for lunch today?”

Long silence.

She still hasn’t forgotten.

“Well…I would love to.”

______
11:45 a.m.

I’m leaving for this nice Italian restaurant in the shopping complex close to the church. I would have preferred In ‘n’ Out, but decided I needed to take her somewhere special to make it up to her. Of course, it’s Italian and I’m thinking about Frankie. He would so love it. I do love Frankie, I’m thinking I must be severely hormonal. I hope no man crosses my path today.

“Where are you going?” Tav is walking in as I’m walking out the front door. Unsuspecting victim of woman’s hormonal mood.

“Uh…lunch.” I don’t feel like carrying on a conversation.

“Date?”

“No.”

“Sure?”

“Sort of…no, not really a date. It’s just something that I need to do.” Why do I have to account for where I’m going, anyway? My hormones are beginning to swing back and forth.

“Need to or want to?”

“Whatever.”

I love you, I hate you, I need you, you irritate me, go away. Awww…you’re so sweet. Buzz off.

I’ve left a very puzzled man behind.

Typical conversation between a man and a women when she is hormonal.

“Do you really mean that?”

“Yes, I do.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yes. Will you please stop asking me if I’m sure? I know how I feel.”

“You know how you feel. You seem pretty…kind of over-reacting. Could it be your hormones?”

He might as well mimic the church lady from Saturday Night Live—”Could it be…Satan?!”

“YOU MEAN MY HORMONES? It isn’t. You can ask me how I feel three days from now and I’ll feel the same. I hate it when—” And three days later, you know you’re going to feel ridiculous.

“You’re right, it was PMS, I feel much better now!”

I should make an app for my moods.

________

12:40 p.m.

Lunch has gone well so far, my hormones are once again under control, so I’m going to do the right thing.

“Eunice, I’m so sorry.”

“Why?” Eunice is definitely confused. Poor sweet woman. Nice meal, nice conversation. I’m being nice. So why the apology?

“I feel that I spoiled your joy-filled retirement party.”

“What do you mean?” Eunice doesn’t know what I’m talking about. Maybe she has dementia. That would make sense. She doesn’t remember. Hallelujah! There is a God.

“You know, what I said about your nice…gift.”

“Heavens to Betsy, girl, don’t worry one bit about it.” She hadn’t forgotten. My hopes dashed to the ground again. And she was being so gracious and kind. It just makes me feel awful. My hormones have swung in direction southwest and I’m afraid I’m going to burst into tears.

“No, no…but truly…I am deeply sorry. I didn’t mean to hurt you and spoil your celebration.” I’m trying to keep the tears from flowing.

“Hurt me?” Eunice is genuinely surprised. Maybe she hadn’t heard what I had said at her party, after all.

“Natalie, I want to thank you. You expressed what I wanted to say, but couldn’t. After fifty-years, after fifty tough, crap-filled years, they couldn’t even give me a dime! They knew a little nest egg would help.”

Sweet Jesus! Sweet Eunice had said “crap!”

“My little girl, if they don’t treat you right at your church, and I mean this for Kate too, just keep walking out that door. God has a better place for you. I should have left when George told me to. I’m just glad that I didn’t wait for them to carry my body from the church office to the morgue.”

“Thank you, Eunice!”

“Anytime, Honey, anytime you need advice or help, just call me. I’m going to have plenty of time on my hands from Monday onwards.”

I have made another friend for life.

Isn’t it amazing how God works? You dread meeting someone or you have a huge fight with someone, and, in the end, they turn out to be your best friend.