The Middle of the Night Phone Call

On Monday night, my phone rang at 1:45am.

That doesn’t happen. Ever.

I leave my phone on at night for a lot of reasons, including:

  1. We don’t have a landline at our house
  2. I have a lot of college kids in my life and they do not respect the appropriate hours of sleep when it comes to texting or calling. While it can make me feel sleepy, I am grateful that they want my voice on the other end of the phone any time of day.
  3. I have a very sick family member right now, so a middle of the night phone call wasn’t off the list of possibilities this week.
  4. I have a ridiculous fear that began when my grandmother passed away my freshman year of college. I worry that if I am not WITH my family, something could happen to them- implying that if we are in the same town, I have any amount of control over the health and well-being of my family. This is dumb on a billion levels, and I have worked through it a lot with my counselor and God, but I still want me phone on all the time in case. Just in case.

[I know. That got a little serious all the sudden. Sorry. But sometimes it is important to remind y’all that I’m a nutso.]

So when my phone rang, I shot up.

The number wasn’t saved, but it was a 615 number, meaning local to Nashville. So in a split second, I ruled out family calling and began to wonder which college student it was.

“uhhh… hello?” I answered while still sitting in bed with my eyes closed.

“Annie?” an older woman’s shaky voice was on the other end and now I was totally confused. Not a college student? And someone who knows my first name? I felt a little panicky wondering who this would be.

“Yes ma’am….”

“This is your upstairs neighbor.”

So I should probably explain this: we have an upstairs neighbor in our house. She’s a really sweet older lady who we rarely see. When I realized it was her on the other side of the phone, I had such a soft heart because maybe this was some sort of emergency and she needed help.

Bless her.

“Yes ma’am. Hi. Are you okay?”

“Yes, honey, I’m fine. Listen. I was just taking some mail to the mailbox and noticed your kitchen light on. Are you home? Just wanted to make sure you were if your kitchen light was on.”


You are calling me, at 1:45am, because you were GOING TO THE MAILBOX and MY KITCHEN LIGHT WAS ON? Wait wait wait.

The confusion with a small side helping of anger began to mount, but I stayed calm and finished the conversation.

“Yes ma’am. I guess I left it on. Goodnight.”

And scene.

Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate the fact that she was concerned.

But 1:45am.

This has made me re-think my need to have my phone on all night long.

. . . . .

How do you handle your phone at night? On? Off? Silent?

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