You know the feeling you get when the phone rings in the middle of the night? Your heart starts racing while you squint bleary eyed in the darkness, trying to gain some degree of consciousness. As you fumble for the phone, your head throbs in unison with the intense pounding in your chest.

Then, once you’ve mustered enough sound to mutter a hello, the voice at the other end of the line informs you they have a wrong number. Or worse, you hear nothing but a clicking sound as they impolitely hang up.

Anger quickly follows, and you wonder if you’ll be able to get back to sleep. You’re silently (or perhaps vocally) cursing the culprit of this call, and you may just have to share this mishap with your co-workers the next morning. I mean, really…the nerve of some people! How dare they?

I remember the night well, although it was 11-years-ago tonight. Personally, I especially hate being woken out of a deep sleep by loud noises. That night I jumped up in bed, somewhat unconsciously, and reached over my sleeping husband to grab the phone. It was my mother, and at first I wanted to scream at her. Why was she calling me in the middle of the night? I could barely make out the time on the alarm clock through sleepy eyes.

I don’t think I need to tell you the rest, except that sometimes it’s just better when the call really isn’t for you. Remember the next time something a little bit annoying happens…to count your blessings.

To Dale—in remembrance of a life lost too quickly—you’ll be missed, always. xo

12/25/81 – 06/23/01