Mundane Doesn't Describe It

For the slackatudinally challenged.

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I have never taken any exercise except sleeping and resting. Mark Twain, Hard work doesn't harm anyone, but I do not want to take any chances. - Unknown, I am retired and have tried to do as little as possible - slowly. Me.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

W and His Parents.

When we lived in our second house in Arkansas, I thought I had moved to the city. The first house we lived in had no one around except my uncle’s house and a few others. No stores - no anything except cotton and soybean fields and a gigantic pasture with trees behind our house. Our new house had a store next to us and another one about 100 yards away. All of a sudden there was cokes, and candy and cakes – Oh boy! That’s not what I remember the most about living there though.

A lot of the houses and stores were built up. It had to do with the 1927 Mississippi River flood. The store next to us was three stories tall. The bottom had a dirt floor, and was used more for a storage/shop area. The second floor was the store and where the D’s lived. They ran the store and lived in the back. The top was the attic, which could have housed another family.

The D’s I remember most specifically. They were my grandparent’s age and they had a son – W. W had been married and doing pretty good. He was in a car wreck and became a quadriplegic. From what I could gather at my age back then, his wife found someone else, divorced him and W had nothing left and no where to go except to his parents. His parents loved him very much and in the back of their store, in the small area they had to live they had a small room for W.

W was one of the first people I ever thought of as a hero. I was only about 8 or 9 at the time, but I became friends with W. I can remember his room right now. It had two windows facing to our house and yard. He had a TV and books. He had a hospital bed that he always was in except when his parents got him up into his wheelchair. When I got to know him, his arms and legs were very thin and he didn’t seem that big. I know he must have been a very big man at one time because I always thought of his father as a giant. I look back now and think, W was a good man and his parents were exceptional.

Anyway I used to go over to see W everyday. I would climb up the back steps to the second floor where at the back of the store they lived. I would walk right into the house since no doors were every locked there and knock on W’s door. It was usually around the same time everyday and W knew it was me and he would yell my name and come in. W and I would always talk for a long time or we would sit and watch TV and sometimes we would sit and not say anything for a long time. I think the not saying anything times were the ones I like the most. It’s like when you have a good friend, you know you don’t have to talk, you can enjoy just being around them. W and I were good friends for a long time, then one day his parents closed the store and moved back to their original home. W explained to me that his parents were getting to old to take care of him by themselves so they were moving back home to where they had family that could help out. Of course I missed W and his parents very much. I didn’t get to see them again for about 10 years, but they seemed in good health and happy too.

You can’t really appreciate something like this until you get older, but I feel privileged to have known W and his parents. W taught me about living through adversity and about attitude. His parents taught me about love and sacrifice, most especially between family. Sometimes when you’re young, you are given gifts in the way of life lessons. W and his parents gave me these gifts just by living their lives as best they could, and letting me become part of their lives, even for a short time.

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