In the 1840’s my great-great grandparents forged their way from Germany to Texas to escape oppression. I picture my Great-great grandfather finding this location, plunking up a handful of rich soil and saying “Das ist Gut” (this is good). It was here, in the Texas Hill Country, where they homesteaded.
My maternal grandfather bought the property – over 350 acres – from his siblings. My grandparents lived here for forty years of their marriage but sold it to a cousin when age made farm life too difficult. Then, the cousin lost it when he divorced.
Thirty years later, we got the homestead back in the family. Although we only own 4 acres, we benefit from our neighbor who owns the surrounding farmland.
It is quiet, peaceful and brings us back to our roots. It is our Heritage.
If only this 4-500 year-old oak could talk.
But the sunsets speak for themselves.
We go there when we can and, each time, our souls are renewed.
There’d been a bull on top of Aunt Nolie last night and now he was sitting on a bar stool kissing the woman next to him smack-dab on her red lips.
“Cono, this here’s Sunshine.”
I know that song, “You are my Sunshine, My Only Sunshine.” I figured that song was named after her. She has short blond hair and looks like she hadn’t missed a meal in a while. Not that she’s fat, but she has more meat on her bones than most gals I see.
“Well, hello there, Cono,” she says giving me a little wink.
“Hello,” I say, turning back to look at No-Account and giving him my best “you’re a no-account” stare.
“Cono,” he says, “Ye go on over there and sit at an empty table, and I’ll get ye a sody pop. Sunshine and me are gonna talk some business fer a minute.”
No-Account gives Sunshine a pinch on her round butt and she lets out a stupid sounding noise that’s something between a squeal and a giggle.
Sitting there by myself doesn’t stop me from staring, disgusted-like at their carryings-on. She whispers in his ear, he gives her a little smooch, he whispers in her ear, she lets out another harebrained giggle. I get so fed up my belly starts to twist around and I think I might just puke. Standing up I say, “I’m gonna wait in the truck.” And that’s what I do ’cause neither of those fools leave a good Impression on me. They leave a bad taste in my mouth.
I look around the truck, but I don’t see any rope. That sorry son of a bitch never intended to buy me a donkey.
I watch people go in and come out and think about the loser I’m with, the jackass full of bullcorn. My hard-earned-honest-days-work-seed-selling money had gone straight toward something to do with that blonde-hair giggly-eye winker named “Sunshine.”
No-Account finally gets back into the truck and starts jawing again about more things that don’t make no sense. The difference is, this time he’s swerving around the road like a drunk man, which he is.
“Damn” he says when we almost go off the road, “What was that in the street?”
I don’t answer. Even Dad could drive better than this. I just keep sitting and feeling like a stool pigeon, a stool pigeon that has to hold on to the door handle just in case it needs to jump out.
A long time ago, when I wore these tiny boots, I didn’t know who or what I would grow up to be.
What I did visualize at a young age, was that, no matter what, I would be a mother.
But life doesn’t always listen to the script you write in your head. It teases you, tricks you, and leads you astray.
I fought hard for my babies. Basil thermometers, weekly blood tests, in vitro fertilization, the drug, Clomid, that gave me a cyst on an ovary. And on it went. Each time I left the doctor’s office, I cried.
At the age of 32, after a long, painful struggle, I received a phone call. “How does a boy sound?”
We picked up our son when he was five days old. My life was complete, joyous, perfect. My son taught me how to be a mother, and, for that I will be eternally grateful.
And then? Four years later, my infant daughter filled my arms.
Now? Both of my children have given me a grandchild. And, on May 18th, I will have my third. I feel like the luckiest mom in the world.
Life is a beautiful, wonderful mystery. Don’t give up on it. Just stay tuned for the magic that will happen.