This was a picture of my mother taken circa 1939. It is probably the most precious thing my family had. That, and a picture of my Grandparents at their wedding, which I do not have. That picture was the prize, and the frame was very old. I would love to have that picture, or a copy, at least.
I think it says a lot about my families priorities in that there were no pictures that I can recall of my father's parents, or of him on his wedding day. My father worked hard keeping us together, and my mother worked equally hard trying to make a home for us, however it was, and to instill in us a fierce love for independence, good or bad. We have all had times when we needed help, but working up the raw courage to ask for it was horrendous. It was our option of last resort.
As kids we all knew that when we hit 18, we were out the door. Or at least that is the impression I was left with. One of my sisters came home to find that my mother had already packed her things for her. They didn't get on that well. That must have made a very lasting impression on my sister. She has proven very successful in her life, and now raises her grandson. I haven't spoken to her in almost 9 years, and wonder if I ever will. She has shut us out of her life, and I'm really not sure why. I hear she spends a lot of time at home, in her room, which, come to think of it was my mother's way of dealing with things. She went in her room, and you knocked always to enter. Conversely, my mother never knocked on a door in her life.
But, we sisters are all turning into my mother, slowly but surely. We all have a tendency toward distrust, and analyzing motives, but it is not that strong in me. I wish it was, at times. I have been taken for a ride many times but untrustworthy individuals, and could never quite grasp the concept of using someone so viciously for your own ends. Perhaps I have unknowingly used people, thinking I was doing something altruistic, but actually being very selfish in my rationale.
I don't know that my mother's sons inherited that aspect. They were looked on more favorably than the girls, as they were, just that, boys. And in keeping with that tradition, it is I guess in some way right that my oldest brother ended up with all the land my father worked so hard, so very, very hard to keep. I have always thought of owning land as a transient thing.Land as something we borrow on this earth, and happen to use it for a while, calling it our own. I understand that fortunes are made with land, but 50 years from now, who will care, who will remember? Hopefully we give something back, such as my father did, with the trees he planted, and the gardens he cultivated. My brother has also followed in his footsteps, in giving back to the land we called home.
And, I guess that's what makes this not just rambling, but a truth. When my mother passed away, that sense of home, the feeling we grew up with was gone. It evaporated, and left behind a house where my father would live, and I would live with him, but it never was really home again. We were waiting. And now, it is no more.