The path was deep and wide
Used to be, dear reader, that I wondered and I pondered. I even asked the universe but it too kept its lips sealed.
Then, as is very often the case the answer arrived when I least expected. It arrived on the wings of this morning’s thought I woke up with.
Before I tell you the answer, let me outline the question. It just seems logical so as to keep you fully informed and suitably mindful as to my unbridled excitement. The question was, Why am I not in the life for which I was meant, namely a life of privilege, prosperity and plenty?
And then this morning, as I woke to the tune and lyric of a song I had not listened to for many, many years, my answer arrived. Specifically these words: The path was deep and wide, from the footsteps leading to our cabin.
I’m not in the life I used to think I should have been in because of the Stork! That dumb bird, no disrespect to birds, dropped me off on the wrong doorstep.
To be fair to the long beaked one, the house was a little like the one described in the song, “Son Of The Hickory Holler’s Tramp.” There was no house number as such, a huge tree in the back yard would have obstructed the view, we had a lovely chimney that would most probably have mesmerized the bird and there was a huge, none too friendly dog that would have took Storkey’s mind off the job.
In the interests of my personal safety, in case mum reads this, there was none of that tramp stuff going on. I merely write about this because the song was on my mind when I woke up.
Now to the point. It is interesting to note, how we often don’t very much like or enjoy the life we are in. How we think the cards we have been dealt stink. It happens. A lot.
We find ourselves in situations we believe we’d rather not be in. That’s something not to be ashamed of. It happens to everyone. The mythical stork represents life. Like the stork dumps a newborn on a doorstep not of its choosing, life drops individuals into scenes and scenarios they have no say in.
What we do have a say in is the path we choose out of situations.
Look at the plot of the song in question. On the surface this song can easily be dismissed as just a bit of shallow schmaltz. But listen a little closer:
Yeah, the weeds were high, the corn was dry, when daddy took up drinking. Him and Sally Walker, they up and ran away. Then Momma shed a silent tear and promised fourteen children, “I swear you’ll never see a hungry day.”
A woman with 14 kids is left with nothing. You might agree that, that would drive most women to despair, if not worse. But what does this woman do? She decides that her kids were never going hungry. That she will do whatever it takes to provide for them and give them the best chance in life she possibly could. As well as to show them what love means.
So this lady becomes a sex worker. When Momma sacrificed her pride, the neighbours started talking. But we were much too young to understand the things they said. All we really cared about was Momma’s chicken dumplings and a goodnight kiss before we went to bed.
And the outcome? Again the song says it best:
Last summer Momma passed away and left the ones who loved her. Each and every one is more than grateful for their birth. And each Sunday she receives a big bouquet of fourteen roses with a card that reads, The Greatest Mom on Earth.
It’s not the life we find ourselves in, nor the cards we are dealt that make a difference. It’s what we do with what we have and where we find ourselves that makes all the difference.
And the stork? Well, I guess he knew what he was doing all along.