In the past few days, I found myself thinking of my mother more than usual. Her name was Mary and I think that she was a Saint by any standard. She loved me throughout my life, and I can recall her clearly, shaking her head, at a complete loss for words more than once. That’s one of the things that I admire most on reflection- she didn’t comment. When I came home at age 14 with Champagne Blonde hair…no comment. When I was drawing in my eyebrows with too-dark pencil…no comment. When I hemmed my basketball tunic to dangerous heights…no comment. When I danced for 52 hours in a competition… No comment. When I decided to get married, open a Boutique…no comment.
Now how did I get this ramble on? OH! It must have started with the eyebrows…I’ve been retired for six years and have noticed recently that I can go through the day with no eyebrow pencil or mascara on. That was a no-no in my entire adult life. Seven days a week, (unless I was deathly ill), I always put on some war paint. Today, I was thinking how relieved I am, that I can let go “all my childish things”. Now, everything in my life is optional. What a relief! I don’t think about competing or performing. I don’t think about clothes, shoes, or money. I have enough of everything. Those hectic days are racing into the past and even though time is flying by, it contains so few components. We eat whatever and when we want, some days we work a bit and some days we don’t. Everything : optional! We walked around our beautiful back yard tonight, and admired the lush mini forest that we planted tree by tree on the 1 acre hay-field we moved to 40 years ago. Just like the trees, we grew up together, grew stronger, flourished and reached for the sky. (And we produced a couple of cute little seedlings.)
Now, back to my thoughts of Mary. She was a “worry wort”. At least she claimed to be. I always thought that worrying was paralyzing, but she showed no signs of that. On several occasions, she saw my father, Elmer leave for a new mine site, while she stayed behind with three little kids and packed up the household, organized the move and then took the train and bus half way across the country to join the family together. Elmer always had a house ready and the beds set up when we arrived, and it was exciting to get settled again and start school and make new friends.
I knew early on that Mary was a strong woman, all 5 ft 2″, 98 pounds of her!
Mary & Elmer circa 1939