I’ve learned a lot the last few years. Day to day stuff. Sure. Managing life on my own. Well, not completely alone. The One who will never leave me nor forsake me walks with me, or rather, I Him. I try to.
Strength, deep down, surfaced after age fifty. I come from a long line of strong women. I am fortunate to have such great examples of feminine fortitude.
My father was a mechanical engineer and could build anything. He was more than just creative; he was more than just talented. Smart and brilliant.
Now, I know I’m not as smart as my father was, but I can see the potential in ordinary, or worn out, or throw-away things. During this last year of renovating my farmhouse, I have often reminded myself that I am George L. Ellison’s daughter.
Equally so, I have recalled the courage and resilience of my mother Madoline when we lost my father in 1981. My mother’s full name is Berenice Madoline. She was named for one of her aunts, who was named for a character in a book her father was reading at the time of his daughter’s birth. Berenice is Greek, meaning ‘to bear’. Her name also means ‘victory’. Both describe my Mama. She had to bear much, to finish rearing her family by herself. I never heard her complain or play the poor widow. Deep down, her strength surfaced. God Bless Her! What a lady! She never lost her femininity.
Several people have told me that they couldn’t do what I have done. My reply? “You could if you had to.” Who knows? You would probably surprise yourself.
I have been painting kitchen cabinets the last few weeks. Have I ever done that before? Nope. YouTube is great for finding out how. Sand and prime. Sand and paint. Sand and paint again. And again, if need be. The sandpaper represents the rough times in my recent past. Without the sanding, the coats of satin wouldn’t be smoothe or durable. The sanding makes it beautiful.
My father taught me to figure things out. Mama taught me to be beautifully fearless.
Miss you, Daddy. Love you, Mama.
Blessings from the Exile’s Kitchen.