When my grandfather, Allen Spencer and my Great Uncle Albert Schumacher were young men, they were best friends. They did a lot together, including a trapping adventure, or should I say misadventure, which threatened to freeze them to death, causing them to decide that maybe the lumber business suited them better. I think maybe it did serve them better, but it wasn’t their occupations that really impressed me.
In his family history, my Uncle Bill Spencer, Allen’s oldest son, it was mentioned that Grandpa and Albert used to play the violin and the accordion at dances in the area. Then, Uncle Bill mentioned that he did to. I knew that music ran in the family, and while the ability to play an instrument passed me by, I do sing as a backup singer at my church. There are those in my family, however, who play quite well. My grandfather made sure that each of his children could play the violin, even though not all of them enjoyed it. I have to wonder if Grandpa wanted them to play because he loved it so much. I suppose that the excitement of playing in front of people and seeing them all having so much fun, was all Grandpa and Great Uncle Albert needed to be addicted…so to speak. Uncle Bill said that he played for dances too.
My girls, Corrie Petersen and Amy Royce, like many school children, played an instrument, but they continued on through high school. Neither one plays anymore, but I think the still could if they chose to. It’s one of those thing that you don’t forget, you just get a bit rusty. Still, if you continue to play, you could become quite good. My daughter, Amy’s husband, Travis and her son, Caalab both play the guitar. I don’t know how they feel about their ability to play, but I think they are both very good. They haven’t played at dances, but they have played at events where artists can go and play for others. I guess it doesn’t matter if you play at dances, for family, or for other events, being in the band is all that and more for a musician.
I saw a post on Facebook the other day that got me thinking about my two moms. The saying went like this: “Always love your mother, because you’ll never get another.” I started thinking about how often we take our mothers for granted. As children, we depend on our mothers for everything. No matter what the need is, we expect them to be able to meet that need. We think that there is no end to their capabilities. While it’s great for us to think that our mom can do anything, it is somewhat unrealistic, and eventually we start to realize that she is just human, and maybe even annoying at times. Of course, it’s probably just that we have hit those annoying adolescent and teenage years…you know, that time in our lives when we are certain that our mother just doesn’t know anything…well, actually it’s our parents who don’t know anything, but in this case, we are discussing Mom, so she doesn’t know anything. We will feel that way for the next few years, and then suddenly, about the time we hit our twenties, she becomes so much smarter…especially when we become parents, and need her advise on how to treat a sick baby, or some such thing.
Being a mother really is a thankless job, and one that takes a very special person. A mother has to be selfless in so many ways, because it takes so much of her life to do the job she does. She might want to be at the spa, at home reading a good book, or out on the town with the love of her life, but instead, she is out there in the audience watching as your music recital, ball game, or class play are taking place. And who was it that got you to all the necessary practices…you got it, your mom. She set aside all the things she might have been doing, so you could achieve your dreams, or even just see if you really wanted to be a professional ball player, singer, or actor. And when you decided that you liked track, cheerleading, or the debate team, she switched gears, taking it all in stride, knowing that next year, this dream too would morph into something totally different, and she would be cheering you on in that new venture too. It’s a funny thing how your hopes and dreams changed so much through the years, but your mom’s devotion. loyalty, and interest stayed with you, no matter what. It was the one constant in your life.
As your mother gets older, her position in your life changes, as she steps back to let you soar, but you always know that she will be there to help you with anything you need her for. She becomes your go to person, when the kids need to be picked up and you are at work, or you want to go out for the evening with your husband, and need a babysitter. Who do you call? Well, we know, it’s not Ghostbusters, but it often is your mom. Without really meaning to, you tend to take for granted that she will always be there to help you when you need her, and yet, before you know it, you suddenly realize that she is getting older. You begin to see her as a little more fragile, less able to be that go to person, and suddenly it’s more like you are becoming the new go to person. It’s about this time that you begin to realize that while you have always appreciated all she has done for you over the years, you probably didn’t show her just how much you appreciated her often enough. You realize just how short life is, and it does make you want to let her know just how much you appreciate her, just how proud you are of her, and just how much you love her, before it is too late. To my mom and my mother-in-law, I want to say that you have been the two most important women in my life for so many years. I wouldn’t be where I am, were it not for you. You have and always will be the greatest mother and mother-in-law on earth, and I love you both very much. Happy Mother’s Day!!
My niece, Kellie is going to be singing at our church on Easter Sunday, and as a special treat, we got to hear her song this morning. Our church has a program on Sunday mornings at 9:30 on KTWO television in Casper, Wyoming, and Kellie’s performance will be aired there on Easter morning. I hope no one minds if I plug that just a little, as I am very proud of Kellie. Her song was beautiful, and brought tears to my eyes.
But, more than the beauty of the song, is the miracle that Kellie’s life is. Kellie had a rough beginning. She was born late and so was not underweight, but as happens sometimes in late births, she had some breathing problems that caused her to have to be flown to Denver. I don’t know all the details of her condition, and that is not important anyway. Kellie spent the weekend in Denver and then came home, where she grew into a happy and very, very giggly girl, as anyone who knows her can attest.
Her story doesn’t really end there, however. Kellie was born on Thursday, March 15,1990, and came home from Denver that following Sunday. I bowled with some of the nurses here that cared for her before she was transferred to Denver. That Tuesday morning when I went into bowling, they asked me how the baby was doing. I told the Kellie was doing great and was at home. They said, “Home, home!! Not in the hospital here??” I told them yes, to which they replied, “That is amazing!!! We didn’t expect her to live, much less be home in just 2 days!!” They were so stunned and so pleased that they had tears in their eyes.
God had done, and continues to do great things in Kellie’s life. As I said, she grew into a giggly girl whose laugh has the ability to make everyone around her laugh, even if they have no idea what is so funny, and with Kellie, it may be nothing at all, because she just finds life to be a reason to celebrate, and she finds joy and happiness in every moment. I know that giggly girl will always live inside her, and that she will always be a blessing in that way, but beyond that, she is an amazing and accomplished singer. But for me watching her today, and looking back on her beginning…well, I found myself filled with a sense of wonder and pride at the woman she has become.