Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of "It's No Use Crying over Spilt Milk" (without using the actual phrase or literal exampl (02/07/08)
- TITLE: GET OVER IT
By Marita Thelander
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Nurses smiled at her, but rarely said anything. Millie was known as the grouchy one in the home. She rarely smiled…..okay, she never smiled. She had a permanent scowl that set such deep creases in her forehead you could hide a dime in the wrinkles.
Millie grunted as she settled into her chair. If she found anyone sitting there, she would simply stand and wait for them to move. The other residents avoided any confrontations with Millie.
Humming a tune of no particular melody, Dot shuffled her way down the street. Every Thursday she took the city bus into town to visit a dear old friend in the nursing home. Wearing a faded blue house dress and an odd brownish sweater, Dot’s fashion sense grabbed anyone’s attention. Even so, people smiled and waved, pleased to see her tottering along.
As Dot emerged from the elevator, nurses immediately greeted her. The toothless grin in return had become a highlight to the staff and residents. Taking her time, Dot stopped to say hello to everyone, asking about their health, kids and anything else that popped into her meandering mind.
Millie pretended to look out the window, but actually had her eyes on Dot. She often wondered what made her so happy. The furrow in her brow grew deeper by the minute as she stewed over how long it took for Dot to get to her.
Millie cleared her throat in an attempt to get Dot’s attention. Unsuccessful, she tried again, a little louder. No response.
“Dottie!” Millie barked.
The nurses jumped.
The residents rolled their eyes.
Dot appeared oblivious.
Finally, one of the nurses intervened. “Good morning, Miss Dot, are you here to see Millie? She’s seated right over by the window awaiting your visit.”
“Oh, is she? Thank you, Hun.” Dot proceeded to shuffle across the room. With the lack of grace that one would expect, she flopped into the chair across from Millie.
“It’s a beautiful day outside today.”
“Planted my tomatoes last week.”
“Hope it doesn’t frost.”
“If it does, I have time to start more.”
Soon, Dot had Millie talking. Dot prattled on about her garden, the neighborhood kids helping her pull weeds, Pastor’s sermons, updates from the women in the church…...
“I don’t want to hear about the church.” Millie abruptly interrupted.
“You know why,” Millie uttered with bitterness. “They hurt me.”
“Listen up, Millie. I’m only gonna say this once.”
Millie’s eyebrows shot up in surprise at the tone in Dot’s voice. She had never ever heard Dot be cross with anyone.
“You have become a bitter old woman over some silly offense from years ago. No one remembers it but you. You chased off our new young pastor when he tried to visit you, all because of what? Some trivial thing that happened so long ago, that only you remember it. Most of the ones your mad at are dead now!” Dot came up for air and with as much strength as she could muster she finished her rant. “It’s high time you let bygones be bygones. Plain and simple….. get over it.”
All eyes were on the two friends. No one had ever heard anyone speak to Millie like that and get away with it. One of the men in the group coughed in an attempt to draw the attention away from the pair by the window.
Dot stood and shuffled toward the elevator. Turning back, Dot had one last thing to say to her. “See you next Thursday.”
Back in her room, Millie rummaged through a drawer. She pulled out a black and white photo of a group of women at a church social. There was Dot’s big smile, except she had all her teeth then. Millie stood next to her, not smiling. This is when it all started. Millie quarreled with the other ladies all day about decorations, food, music and anything else she had an opinion on. None of her ideas were used. She simply didn’t get over it then and obviously still hadn’t.
Millie wept. Tears flowed long and hard, cleansing tears that flowed to the deepest crevices of her soul. Today Millie got over it.
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