Monday, January 11, 2010

My Mother's Earliest Memories

I come from several generations of farmers on both sides of my family. My father was born in 1920; my mother in 1923. Both of my parents were raised in wood-plank houses. The wind and dust from the sage-broom-swept yards blew through cracks in the wall. The children would lie on the floor to watch the antics of the chickens pecking under the house or the rooting of the occasional pig.

My maternal grandmother gave birth to five girls before producing a son. My mother was the fifth girl (the fourth to survive babyhood). I am sure her parents and other members of her family were thrilled with the birth of a son after so many girls. My mother was so jealous that she tried to attack her baby brother with a pair of scissors (why the two-year-old had a pair of sharp scissors is unexplained), managing to cut his leg.

Actually, this is not her memory. Her family harped on it enough that it became seared in her brain. She tottered in her father footsteps, so much so that one day when he drew water from the well, she was hit in the head when he released the crank (is it called crank??). Another head injury occurred when her older sister swung a baseball bat and my mom was behind her.

1 comment:

  1. if you had 5 kids, it would not surprise you that maw-maw was able to acquire a pair of scissors.

    seriously, though, are you going to write more on this blog?


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