Publisher's note: Please join me in welcoming Author Michele Rhem, who presents us with her poignant memoirs of the Rabbit Patch, where her diaries weave tales of a simpler, expressive life lost to many, but gathered together in her most familiar environs - the Rabbit Patch.
School started back today for us. The hurricane may have littered our yards and sadly taken a few trees, but we fared good, compared to our neighbors, on the coast.
The children came back with all sorts of tales of the storm . . .and the clean up. I was complaining because my back was "out" and everyone had either stepped in fire ants, gotten scratched or had blisters from working. Still, I can not imagine the destruction that some folks or dealing with . . or the loss.
The good news is that people are helping. A building supply store is offering discounts on the items needed to rebuild. Civic groups and Churches are sending meals and many, many people are making all sorts of donations. Folks are doing what they can to ease the suffering . . .and that means so very much. It is a silver lining and a testimony, that there is goodness in the world.
Brynn had her actual birthday on Tuesday. I thought of her all day and wondered how we ever got along without her. I gave her a music box, that plays "You Are My Sunshine". The first ginger lily of the season, bloomed on her birthday and I couldn't help but notice.
Brants' little son, should be here any day now. When the phone rings, there is a scurry to answer it. Sydney remains as calm as can be. I do hope the baby inherits her perpetual sense of peace. There is a full moon this weekend-and apparently it is a rare one. Though science does not support the notion, that a full moon has any thing to do with impending births. the prospect is exciting.
I remember the days before I became "Honeybee". Truthfully, I was unsure how to be a grandmother. Everyone said it was wonderful and many told me, I would need to adjust my budget , for I would want to buy everything available for the modern child. I would also tolerate poor behavior, as it was not my problem, after all . . . and worst of all, I would love the grandchildren more than my own children! This was not my nature at all, and so I was convinced I just would not get it right. Well, none of that happened. What did happen was that I found a new kind of love. . .a realm I did not know existed. Being a grandmother is "everything its' cracked up to be". And there is more good news, it happens quite naturally. You love them because they were born. It is an uncomplicated, pure affair
By the time, you are a grandmother, you know what matters-what lasts for all times. The passing of many years, now pays off, for because of that, there are stories to tell. We will celebrate at the drop of a hat and sing praises of our grandchildren, "til the cows come home". Grandchildren renew our strength . . .and we are not scared to use it. We stand in the shadows ready to pounce at the slightest inkling that we are needed. The world and its' cares, are lost on grandparents . . .all because we are head over heels and hopelessly smitten with those grandchildren.
I remember my own grandmothers with great fondness. My maternal grandmother was right next door. she kept Baby Ruth bars in the"Kelvinator"and gingersnaps in the cupboard. She gave me coffee on occasion, diluted with canned milk, in a china tea cup. This was a great privilege, as children ought not to drink coffee. She told stories which were full of tragedy and promised to buy me a monkey, when she got rich. I took it for granted, that she loved me better than any one else in the world, for that is how she made me feel. I was not a pretty child with my reddish hair and freckles . . .and skinny, but I felt beautiful in her presence . . .and she convinced me I was bright, too. She died suddenly when I was ten years old, now fifty years ago, yet I can still remember the sound of her voice. In those short years, Grandmama loved me enough to last a lifetime.
My paternal grandmother lived til ninety three. She was as sweet and tender a spirit as I have ever known. She taught me to love flowers and birds . . .and to pray about everything. She had a hard life, but she was not bitter about it. She felt blessed. She loved animals, wild and tame -and mimosa trees. She was generous and she was the least judgmental person I have ever known. I am so thankful that all of my children, got to know her and know her well.
It is no wonder that I take the role of a grandmother, or in my case, "a Honeybee" so seriously.