Precious memories- ‘daddy went off to work every day’

I found it while I was Spring-Cleaning.  It was only a tiny clothespin, but it brought with it a flood of memories. As I gripped the small object tightly in my hand, I felt the years melt away.

It was a rough time for families everywhere.  In an attempt to bring the country out of the Depression, President Franklin Roosevelt had just established the New Deal. My father worked for the Public Works Administration, helped build roads and dams, and worked on the federal projects. Families in our town had little money to spend on nonessentials, but my four- year-old mind knew only that my daddy went off to work every day.

As I held the tiny clothespin in my hand, I remembered sitting on the floor, my eyes glued on an advertisement I’d found in a catalog.  It featured a wondrous “drink and wet” baby doll with marvelous accessories—a bottle, clothing, diapers, a washtub, a clothesline, and of course clothespins—-all packed in a carrying case.  I had pored over the picture for days and knew every item by heart.

The next morning, as daddy got ready for work, I ran up to him, bubbling over with excitement.  “Daddy, see this doll?” I asked, pointing to the picture.  He knelt down beside me and looked as I listed all the items that came with the doll.

“Isn’t it the bestest, Daddy? Please get it for me and do not forget the clothespins.  They are so little and cute.

My father, a man of few words hugged me and said, “We’ll see.” All day my excitement mounted. I could hardly wait until he came home with my doll.

My mother tried to prepare me for disappointment, but I would not listen to reason. 

“Daddy will do it,” I declared.  I knew daddy would bring me the doll.

“Grace, you must remember that daddy doesn’t have much money and the doll cost a lot.

“Mama said trying a different approach. However, nothing my mother said dampened my enthusiasm.

Long before, it was time for daddy to arrive home from work. I positioned myself at the window to wait.  Finally, I saw him walking down the road.  I jumped up and dashed out the door. “Grace honey come back,” my mother called.  Ignoring her, I ran to meet daddy and get my new doll.  As I got closer to him, I saw he was carrying his black metal lunch box in one hand and what looked like a suitcase in the other.

“MY doll!” I cried as I reached for him.  “My doll! I knew you would get my doll, daddy.” He switched his lunchbox to the other hand with the case and hosted me up.

“I couldn’t disappoint my little girl, he said.

Now as I stand holding the clothespin, I realize that he had never disappointed me.  He had always be there to get me all things I needed and some things I didn’t need but desperately wanted.  Buying that doll meant he was not able to purchase something that he might have needed.  Through the years, my daddy was always there for me, offering me security and love no matter what form of sacrifice it meant for him. {Author unknown}

Millie’s thought for today,  “precious memories that echo in your own soul life long. after you’ve turned the page of your memory book”. Unknown

Mildred Higgins

russandmill@netzero.net