Out of it

Tonight at dinner we were talking about guardian angels. We were discussing how we each had one and what our guardian angel does for us.
All of a sudden, Daniel asked, “Do guardian angels carry guns?”
My first thought was, “Wow, he really is fixated on guns.”
As I have shared here, he lost his role in his preschool Christmas program because a good wise man does not pretend his gift for Baby Jesus is a gun. And if you ask Daniel what he wants for Christmas, his face breaks into a huge smile as he says, “A Clone Warrior and a gun toy.”
Then I realized that Daniel was hearing “guard” in “guardian angel” and trying to make connections. He knows that a guard at a bank carries a gun. John explained that guardian angels do not carry guns because they have far greater powers that allow them to protect people.
So it was a perfectly legitimate question, although it took me a few minutes to realize why our little boy was asking it. Just an hour or so later, though, another question really threw me for a loop.
I ran out to buy boots for Leo—and if it doesn’t snow in Baltimore tomorrow, I do expect to get at least partial credit for the storm’s missing us.
On my way to the store, I stopped to pick up a prescription for my husband.
I stood at the pharmacy counter and waited as the pharmacist pulled up the information in the computer.
Then he turned to me and said, “Yes, he called. Is he out of it?”
I was stunned.
Was this man seriously asking me whether my husband was unaware of his surroundings? What had he sounded like on the phone? Did he give the impression that he didn’t have a grip on what was happening? This was astonishing because John is the one who has his act together, while I am the one who let us get to December without checking to see whether we had snow boots for both boys.
I didn’t know what to say.
As I was bracing myself to storm off in indignation, the pharmacist said, “The thing is that our shipment isn’t coming until tomorrow, but I could give you a few pills if he’s completely out of it.”
“Oh,” I said. “Yes, he’s used the last pill.”
The pharmacist handed over a few pills to tide us over. Then, as I was thanking him, I told him what I had thought he meant. We had a good laugh over it before I headed home.
So my husband is not out of it, but I think I may be. My guardian angel has his work cut out for him.

Catholic Review

The Catholic Review is the official publication of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.