Sunday, March 25, 2007

Many years ago.....


She was a young girl in love first, then she became my grandma. Here is the story.
About two years ago me and my family cared for my grandpa not long before he passed away. We kept him at home so he was more comfortable and it was such an honor to be able to care for him, each day was precious. I was always close to my grandma, she passed away about 17 years ago. I never thought of grandma or even seen her in any other role other than, "grandma". She'd always been my grandma, she'd always be a grandma. Her and grandpa weren't rich. But they were better off than most people, they always had been. Or had they? Well, here's where the story takes a different turn. Late one night while taking care of papa I got bored and went to the closet. I began to feel and dig around on the top shelf. I found mine and grandma's old checker board and pulled it out. As I did, a heartshaped valentine candy box fell out. I bent down to pick it up. I shook it, I could tell something was in it, so of course I had to be nosy. I knew if there was any candy left it would probably have some type of personality by now. Ewww, scarrrry. I set it down on the bed and removed the lid. A stack of worn and yellowed envelopes lay inside. I squinted to read the faded lead pencil writing on the paper. It read Sylvia Mullins, Hazard Kentucky. Hmmm, that was grandma's maiden name. I pulled one out and it was addressed to my grandpa. I began to read the letters inside and I got to know a very young couple, who was deeply in love. Letters from her to him and from him to her. What a love story began to unfold. They letters began again, on into their marriage, when he had to go out of state to find work. They were then a struggling young family, trying hard to make ends meet. I seen them both in a whole new light. I got to know a side of my grandma that I had never known before. She had been a young woman once, deeply in love. She became a wife, and a mother. In one letter papa told her to have RJ milk the cow for her and shoot some coal out because she had been sick and papa was in Virginia. The next letter I read, grandma said the cow had went dry and the man couldnt shoot the coal out because he'd cut his finger off and was in a bad way himself. I had a wave of emotions reading these letters. They are precious to me. Out of all the nice things of my grandmothers that I have, this little heartshaped valentine box is the greatest treasure of all.

11 comments:

Sue said...

Isn't it a treasure to find a forgotten box of letters, allowing you to see the early life of your grandparents. I want to leave my grandkids each a box of memories from our time together, something for them to hold onto and treasure too. Such a sweet story, thanks for sharing.

Lindy said...

What a wonderful treasure Mikki.
Lindy

~~Mikki Jo said...

Indeed a treasure Sue. I cherish it.

Tracey said...

Honey, that is just the sweetest gift they could ever give you, isn't it? You've even got me tearing up here!

RoseMary said...

That is great family treasure to have, Mikki Jo. How precious they must be to you. I'm sure that you will read them over and over, each time absorbing a little more information about your grandparents. Family history is so neat to know!

~~Mikki Jo said...

I have read them over and over and your right, I glean a little more each time. Yes Tracey, it is the sweetest gift.

Cheryl said...

You are so lucky to have found such a treasure Mikki. I thoroughly enjoy reading your stories on your blog and also think it's a great idea to put your stories in some type of book form or something.
Cheryl

kim said...

Mikki, Here is th epoem I told you about:

What Is a Grandmother? She's the one who taught me to crochet, even though I've long forgotten. She's the one who taught me to embroider, That I still do, and I've kept the piece of material with my first tentative stitches. She's the one who taught me to sew on her treadle machine, though I now use an electric. Together we shucked corn and removed it from the cob with that funny little contraption. She let me sleep on the downstairs couch, when I was afraid to sleep upstairs alone. She let me bring my friends with me on those hot summer days to stay and play. She let us knock on all the walls upstairs to find the secret passages, even though she knew there weren't any, because I had read too many Nancy Drew novels. She's also the woman who remembered a young girls words about a "beautiful quilt" , and 20 years later presented it to her as a wedding gift. There are so many things to remember and too little time to write, this is only a fraction of what my grandmother means to me. I love you very much grandma, you mean the world to me. Love, Kimberly

Tammy said...

What a blessing...you just never know what you'll find do ya?
:-D
PS...I've got a new blog address, just click to my link...you might want to correct it in your links too...sorry for any inconvenience

BeachysCapeCodCupboard said...

Oh that is such a treasure you have! Your grandparents' story right there for you to read!

PurpleFlowerFairy said...

thanks for the sweet post on my blog. i of course then had to come take a peek at yours =) i especially love this blog about your g'ma and g'pa - how SWEET!!! debbie =)