We sat at a four-top near the fireplace, Mommal's walker parked next to all the other walkers by the coat rack with the feathered fedora hat. The four of us a chain, generations. My grandmother, my mom, me, and my daughter lunching at the Cracker Barrel.
A round table nearby, in the corner- ladies celebrating their 86th birthdays, and the whole restaurant sang to them. It made me want to happy cry, and later Ivy ran to them to say happy birthday and give hugs to old people she didn't know, even one with an oxygen mask. She said her mother-in-law's name was Ivy.
In the car she chattered on about her imaginary friends and all the exciting things they get to do and see and I jolt at the sound of her voice, it's lower today. Not the high birdy sound but different, older, and her words, they are suddenly more mature and imaginative.
Mommal's voice is changing, too. It's shaky and higher. I've been afraid that lately I'd lost my own voice but I now realize it's not lost, it's just evolving, and it's actually wonderful whatever it is, this time I'm in, I get to discover. Ivy starts dance next week, and Carter has joined Little League. I find my marks on stage and move into place.
Tonight we made cupcakes and with Pandora on the classical station it was like we had our own soundtrack, like we were in a movie, she cracked and stirred and I lived every moment of it not like it was our last, but like it was only the beginning. Because it so is.