December 29, 2013

KNISELY: My mind has ran away


---- — I was sitting at the desk in my home office, opening the mail and paying bills. You know, livin’ the dream stuff.

I had received a few Christmas cards. Not having sent out Christmas cards in over a decade, I shockingly still receive some.

There was a little incident that put an end to my spreading holiday cheer via the U.S. Postal System. I hadn’t been out on my own long and decided I want to send out Christmas cards one year. That’ll be grown-up behavior, I decided.

So I went to the store and bought some super pretty cards. They were long and skinny, which I liked because it was unusual to the normal square cards. I also liked them because they had Christmas lights on them. Not actually light bulbs but made to look that way. They were raised off the surface of the card to look three-dimensional. Just an all-around cool card for my first venture into mailing out my own Christmas cards.

The only problem was, they weren’t cool to the people I mailed them to. I think the fact that they had to pay the additional postage helped in that. Oh, and the fact that most of them were delivered in pieces collected in Ziplock bags didn’t help either.

Those raised light bulbs got caught in the sorting machine, or so I’m told. The machine snarled up about 10 of the cards before it was shut down. Well, that is an estimate because I — fortunately — didn’t hear from all of the people I sent these little Christmas wonders to. I did hear from my more outspoken, smart aleck friends.

One friend mailed me a bill for the additional postage, requesting a check for 22 cents because he was afraid the coins would get caught in the machine. Another sent me a piece of paper with one of the light bulbs taped to it. Saying he figured I was in mourning from the mangling and subsequent death of my cards, he thought I would want to keep a memento of their short time here on Earth.

So, after all that, I decided I was never going to send Christmas cards again — and look into getting new friends.

Anyway, back to the real reason for this column.

I opened a Christmas card sent from my mother. I opened it up and there was writing on both pages. Just above the pre-printed message on the right side, it said “Dear Judith.” I laughed, thinking my mom accidentally sent me someone else’s card.

Then under the pre-printed message, it said, “Love, Mom.” I stop laughing.

Strangely enough, the first thought to rush into my messed-up brain was, “Oh my goodness, Mom has another child I don’t know about.”

Then the thoughts snowballed from there. Who is this person? It is Dad’s child? Is it a love child from before Dad? Is it a child she had after they divorced? It had to be from before, I surmised.

Then I looked to the left side of the card to see she had written, “I’ll be seeing you soon, can’t wait!”

There goes the thought of the child been long lost. It’s someone she’s going to see soon? Where is this person? Does my sister, Terri, know about this? Is Terri even really my sister? I don’t know what to believe anymore!

A few minutes later, after I had crafted an entire life story for this Judith and how it came to be that we shared a mother, I decided to just call Mom and get to the bottom of this.

Just as she picked up the phone, it hit me. In the play I’m currently rehearsing for with Logansport Civic Players, my character’s name is Judith.

I couldn’t even hear Mom saying “hello” because I was laughing too hard.

Misty Knisely, managing editor, can be reached at 574-732-5155 or via email at Follow her: @PharosMK