Grandma’s Potato Problem

Have you ever had a childhood memory, that when you really thought about it, was just a little weird? It seems like I have quite a few of those but this particular memory is well, disturbing. And, it’s guaranteed to probably buy me a space in Hell, especially after Uncle R reads about his involvement and realizes I’m giving up a family secret that should have died ages ago.

When I was a little girl, my paternal grandmother was a breast cancer survivor. She was faced with getting a mastectomy and back then, reconstructive surgery really wasn’t an option so women were supplied with prosthetic breasts. My grandmother’s big round squishy breast was kept in the top drawer of her vanity. I don’t know why she kept it in a drawer rather than in her blouse, but then again, sometimes Grandma liked to drink her dinner rather than eat it.

Uncle R and I both knew where she kept her booby prize and would often peek in the drawer to check it out, occasionally poking it with a curious finger. We each had a thing for its silky, squishy texture and we would prod it for hours (kind of like a kid’s stress reliever ball – but weirder). We eventually got braver and on some days, we freed the little critter from its dark abyss, in order to just hold it for a few minutes of guilty pleasure.

One day, while Uncle R and I were visiting Grandma, we found her lone hooter lying on the bathroom counter, looking rather forlorn and lost. Our little brains worked in symphony and mischievous thoughts raced through our heads; a game of hot potato would certainly entertain her little friend while providing us with hours of endless enjoyment. Back and forth, side to side, we flung that cantaloupe size piece of squishy fun into the air, all the while listening for any evidence that Grandma might be stumbling up the creaky steps. Hearing nothing, our quiet chuckles quickly turned into gut busting belly laughter that echoed throughout the second floor bathroom. Over and over, we pelted each other with the voluminous sphere, until we were left with fresh red abrasions wherever our tender skin was exposed.

I don’t know how long Grandma was watching before she finally cleared her throat and made it known that she did not approve of our new sports activity, however, I’m guessing it was for awhile – judging by the sting left on our little butts and the threat of a “report” being made to our dad. All in all, Grandma never did make the dreaded “report” to our dad and we were let off with a warning. It never really stopped us from periodically checking in on our new little buddy, but we certainly never allowed it to become airborne again.

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