No home is complete without an extra large, over stuffed chair, with padded high-wide arms; in fact, two is essential if you have children.
Sail with me in my warm yielding safety ship. Two large comfy chairs pushed together near the hot-air heat register, soft multi-colored cotton quilts that surround and tent me as I lay back on down pillows. Minute dust particles dance in the soothing warm sun’s rays shining through the bubbled glass. High clouds moving slowly across the sun and pine boughs swaying near the front porch propelled by a gentle wind cast shadows and light play on the side of my ship. Warm baking bread smells emerge promisingly from the kitchen, while muffled sounds of busy hands and a teakettle on the boil bring promise of an early morning treat.
“Permission to come aboard?” sings Mother as she approaches with the daily light green chewy liquid vitamin I’ve learned to tolerate, a small glass of fresh squeezed orange juice, and some weak tea laced with milk and honey. “The bread’s not ready just yet.” I am cradled in love, held safe in my cushioned Ship of State. My reward for the many times I’ve tackled the ravages of whooping cough, pneumonia or bronchitis. At night Mother would climb in my ship, raise me over her shoulder and we would sleep together in that warm safe boat.
My sisters and I improvised as our children grew. Perhaps not home made bread but certainly weak tea with milk and honey, chicken soup, grilled cheese sandwiches. Most of us were able to stay home in the early years if the children were ill and we would set up our couches and chairs if there was a need for a warm welcoming ship to sail.
Ahhhh, the land of our Father's Father's Father..........Do you think there is truth in genetic inheritance regarding strengths and weaknesses even when the nurture is different. Is it true that most Irish tend to be of a firey nature, ready to fight for their cause, deeply introspective and fond of the drink. Or are we living up to our own reputation thus living a self fulfilling prophecy? What ever the case, we all cling to our own, fight to the death for selves or cause, rise to the occasion and love to tell a good story. In publishing this blog I am attempting to tell our story as I see it. You have your own stories and we would love for you to share them with us. Comment on any piece you see here or contact me and ask to be a blog contributor with the ability to publish you thoughts directly to a blog post (not just to comment on others) Hope to hear from you..............
Saturday mornings, we spent some time, while in PJs, walking around the house with books on our heads to teach us to maintain our proper posture and balance. Then Mother would sing "The Stripper Instrumental" as we did our Folies Bergere act coming down the stairs in order of height. We saw no contradiction at that time between the two activities.
We went to bed nearly every night with rollers or "rags" (hair twisted around rags and then tied to keep the hair in) which were a type of soft roller if our hair was longer and we were younger.
We had nail check, shoe check, hair check, ear check, teeth check and a check on nearly all other body parts for cleanliness.
We never had spots on our clothes when out in public, we were never allowed to cuss and makeup was reserved for after 14 years of age. We were told "you're too beautiful to cover that lovely face." Even the fact that I have few eyebrows was reversed to tell me that "my eyes were so big and lovely that if I had eyebrows I would look funny" Big bangs helped too!!!
The arts and music were encouraged pass times from the time we were infants. We were sat down to watch American Band Stand so that we would know the latest dances; All the while being told that this was acceptable and this was not, etc.
We didn't resent any of these regimens except ONE (getting the rats out of our hair) was not any fun!!
"Why did this happen to you?" "If not me than who?" " Don't worry, we'll take care of you and the kids" "Just take care of yourself." "Do you want me to do anything for you?" "Tell me what you plan to do for the rest of your life." "You mean my Plan B, or retirement or what?" "Yes, the rest of your life." "How long do any of us have, but I guess I will retire as soon as possible.Is that what you mean?" "Yes, exactly!"
Such Grace under fire! Such peace in trying circumstances. As always, she is difficult to live up to. What possible reason is there for this time in her life?