Although I’d wanted to write since childhood, my best inspirations came after having children of my own. So often in the past 36 years, I have heard my inner voice narrating, “I am a writer”, and so I have stored up several little incidents that I simply want to share. And that’s the neat thing about writing, for me, anyway; that I can express a thought or emotion, or report a happening, and enjoy it for just that – and if someone else enjoys reading it, then that’s icing on my coffeecake.
It began back in about 1980 in our little 12×65 mobile home, as I made my way from the morning pick-up and straighten-up and into the kitchen where our little brown-eyed 3-year-old was leaning over the kitchen table, one foot in a chair, the other leg folded behind and a finger just coming out of the butter dish. “Look Mama”, he said excitedly, “I found a new real good sompin‘ to eat, butter on crackers!” The look on his face said, “please don’t scold before you hear why I’m nearly on the table, and there are crumbs everywhere”, and there was just a hint of guilt in that sweet smile. He seemed to think he had single-handedly invented the world’s best snack. I, however, was seeing a whole different picture. There amid the crumbs and smears of butter on a placemat, was a buttered knife, a used piece of bubble gum, a cocklebur and a teacup of water holding the two Rose of Sharon blooms he had brought in to me earlier. My heart melted at the sight of this gorgeous chunk of a child, and with gratitude for such a moment. I don’t recall anything else about that day except that I grabbed a scrap of paper, which I still have in a basket, and wrote down the memory.
I wish, of course, that I’d stopped to write down many more memories, but I was taught that idle hands are the devil’s workshop, and I sure didn’t want to let the devil set up shop in our home! So, busy I was, and too few coffee breaks I took in those days. As I look back at that kitchen table, I know how blessed I was. Two beautiful children, a husband who worked hard to be sure I could stay home and raise them, and a simple country life allowed me to soar a bit with the eagles, on wings above the storms, gathering strength to run, or walk, as life’s course would dictate, without falling beneath the load. Isaiah 40:31 became my favorite verse long ago, and I cherish it more and more as I reflect back, and look forward. With too few dollars to keep film in the camera, I grabbed pen and paper and began storing little notes like a squirrel hiding nuts. Now, being older has two sides: with a little more time to grab a cup of coffee and reminisce, perhaps, but will I be able to recall where I’ve stashed all those tidbits of time? I hope that I can discipline myself to write regularly, but don’t bet all your beans on that one!