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You Never Outgrow Scaring Your Mom

, , , , | Related | February 25, 2022

I go to my first solo optometrist appointment at age nineteen. I’m short with a baby face that causes most people to peg me as an old middle-schooler or a young high-schooler. My mother drops me off and looks at frames with me for a bit, but she has errands to run. Since I don’t have a car, she tells me that if I finish before a certain time, I’ll have to call my brother for a ride home, but if I finish after, she’ll come pick me up.

I manage to mix up these simple instructions and text my brother despite it being a little after the specified time, not before. When my brother texts me to say he’s outside, I finish looking at frames, say goodbye to the two front employees who have been helping me, and leave with my brother.

We’re halfway home before I get a phone call from my mom.

Mom: “Where are you?!”

Me: “On the way home? It was after [time], so I called [Brother].”

Mom: “Oh, thank the Lord!”

She gave me the full explanation when she got home. When she came to pick me up, she looked around the office and then asked the front employees if they’d seen me. Cue panic because, for all they knew, I’d gotten in a car with a stranger and driven off. According to my mother, the front desk employee was nearly in tears. All three of them were half-convinced that I’d been kidnapped.

Luckily, my phone was on vibrate, not silent, or they might’ve called the police if I hadn’t answered. Whenever I tell this story, I refer to it as “the time I gave three different people a heart attack at once.”

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