As I go back in time, my thoughts always go towards my mother and father, who brought me into this world.
In my time, you were delivered by a doctor who made house calls, or a midwife who knew what she was doing because she had done so many of them.
The father usually would be out working or maybe in the next room, waiting to hear the cries of that new born child who would be loved by all. The mother was given nine-months seniority on dad, because she carried that child all those months while still doing just about all those things she did any other time.
It was the mother who worked right up to birthing time to keep her family fed and together. I saw my mother doing as much as she could to keep the home the same for all of us. Of course, she expected each of us older children to do our part, plus a little more in case she got tired enough to stop for a while.
Mother had a house full of children, and she did the best she could to ensure that, for each and every one of us, she was Johnny-on-the-spot when we got hurt, sick, and when we just wanted to sit around and listen to her tell some good old stories of life as she had it in her younger years.
Mom had it pretty rough, and Grandmother Sapp was a person of discipline. And her Great-Grandmother Leeds was strict, too. There was only one way to do things and that was their way, as law of the elders.
When Mom met our father, she fell in love right away and she was loyal to the end. Dad had a good woman he could count on to be there for him and all the family.
And Dad worked as much extra time that he could, just to make sure all of us were kept fed and warm. There were days when we did not see him for a week, because of working the overtime and not getting home until we had already gone to bed.
Mom always said that you honor your elders, and the parents came first in that honor. You were taught that each of your brothers and sisters were entitled to be honored as family members, and love for each other was essential to make that happen. I would say that I was one of the richest people around, having been born to our parents. Each of us had our own way of doing things, but the result would be the same.
As I get older and wait for that day when I will meet up with them again, I will sit sometimes for an hour, going back in time in my mind. There are so many things that leave pictures in my mind of how it was in my days of old.
The brothers and sisters are leaving this earth and going Home so soon. There are only four of us left. The same goes for the cousins we have. Time has given us many memories of love of family and of the old ways of doing things.
In today’s time, we look backward and the picture is getting dimmer, but the way forward is getting brighter. We walk the paths that have been laid down for us. And as we go farther, we think about the ways God gave us to enjoy all the wonderful things that we cherish each day. The air we breathe, the sounds we hear, the things we see, and the ways we use them to make our short stay here a good one.
The beauty of life as we see it is a blessing only given by our Father, and many times we just don’t honor that blessing enough. We reap what we sow, and we look only toward the light.
Ray “Uncle Ray” Day is a weekly contributor to the Kokomo Tribune. Contact him at email@example.com.