My mother with Junior Waverly 1942 in Minnesota.
From as far back as I can remember, and yes, I can remember things that happened when I was four, but I remember people telling me he isn’t my father. I’m not unique, but when it happens to you, it’s personal.
Sounds confusing doesn’t it. When my hubby and I visited Chugwater, WY this last week it brought back things, tidbits, my mother said out of the clear blue sky. This one about Chugwater was a story about when I was born. Not long after my birth in 1942 she packed up and made the trip to Chugwater. She wanted to stay with her mother who had recently moved there. When she arrived her mother greeted her at the door and told her she had to go back to Minnesota; she didn’t have room for her, she was living with a man. I can only imagine the shock to my mother when she heard that, but she turned around and went back to Minnesota, me in tow.
Fast forward a couple of years, because I remember this one. We were visiting my grandmother (my mother’s mother) in Vancouver, WA. My little brother, who is four years younger than myself, was lying on the bed and I was sitting beside him. My dad’s picture sat on the night stand beside the bed. When grandma came into the room I pointed to the picture and said that’s my daddy. Grandma yelled at me and told me no he wasn’t and I shouldn’t be calling him my daddy. I remember just looking at her, I didn’t understand. I do remember my mother coming in and telling her mother not to say things like that. This incident faded into the dark realms of my mind. Tucked away, only to bring out and re-examine many years later.
Four years later, New Cumberland, PA, (dad was in the military) and my own mother tells me my daddy, who was sitting next to her, wasn’t my daddy. I started arguing with her saying yes he is. But, then, my mother clamed up. Would not utter another word about my dad. I remember my dad saying “Ann, you shouldn’t have said that.” Mom was stone faced and ignored him. Another memory to tuck away and bring out later. Another piece of the puzzle.
Seven years and this time in San Bernardino, CA. Mom and Dad took a trip to Minnesota before he was to ship out to Germany. Grandma came to stay with us and keep and eye out, keep us in line. By this time I had two brothers and two sisters, all younger than myself. I wanted to go for a ride with my boyfriend and grandma said I couldn’t. That I was no good like my mother. Now where did that come from? She kept telling me that. I couldn’t wait till my mother got home and ask her what was grandma talking about. And you guessed it. She said to drop it, she didn’t have any idea what bee got in grandma’s bonnet. Still another memory.
This story goes on for another forty years before I found out my mother had an affair and she had a child from that affair. She was married at the time but her husband was away during WWII. That child was me. I found this out from her divorce papers. Puzzle piece #1.
I really like this one of my mother. About 1941.
From pictures in her albums to names, and more names, the puzzle gets bigger. I’ve been working on it for ten years. I AM closer, but still not there. When I find one piece to the puzzle I start looking for the other. It may take another ten years, but the puzzle will be put together. I will keep you posted.