During the time that Meems was still highly verbal but dementia recycled her thoughts like broken records, she told this story often. Sometimes two or three times during the course of a meal.
"Reed, do you remember that time that I picked you up from Mothers Day Out, and you didn't know that I was your grandmother?" she'd begin with a smile. "Your mom and dad were out of town, and I was keeping you boys. One day when I went to pick you up at Mothers Day Out, your teacher said, 'Reed, your grandmother is here!' You looked up and said, 'That's not my grandmother! That's my Mimi!' Then, your teacher said, 'Well, she's also your grandmother!' It was SO cute! You looked SO surprised! 'You're my GRANDMOTHER? I thought you were just my Mimi!' All day long you'd look up at me and say, 'You're my grandmother!'"
It's been quite some time since this story has been told twice or thrice during a holiday meal with a captive audience listening politely while exchanging furtive smiles and eye rolls.
Now, Meems doesn't remember that Reed is her grandson.
During a recent visit to Lubbock, Reed and I popped over to see Meems. He began his greeting with "Hey, Mimi! It's me, Reed! I'm your grandson!"
My mind swirled and twirled back to the holiday table and the broken record.
The circle of life.