Recently I was reading a small red diary written by my twelve-year old self. Only a few sentences scrawled across the pages, however, they brought back memories.
|My mother, Lois Robison Council, the sweetest mother ever|
My mother gave me freedom to do many things I wanted because she trusted me to be responsible.
But in this diary, I had written about deceiving my mother. I did not tell her things that might end my freedom to ride Daisy. I didn't tell her, and my friend Joyce didn't tell her mother, of the incidents with horses that would have put a stop to our meeting on Saturday afternoons and riding for hours through woods and down trails on open land miles from home. Both Joyce and I had falls from horses, but we weren't hurt and we knew not to tell our mothers if we wanted to continue to ride.
In this diary I tell of the time I was on my way home after riding for hours with Joyce. We had not paid attention to how late it was. It would be dark soon, and I was not going to make it in time. I decided to take a shortcut through an area I had never ridden before. The fat farm horse, Daisy, plodded along until she saw a pile of trash beside the trail. Startled, she shied to the left. I didn't make it with her. I ended up on the ground while Daisy took off through the dark woods.
When I realized I was able to walk, I headed across an open field hoping to reach the road to my house and hoping Daisy would be somewhere easy to find.
In the diary I didn't say how frightened I was, but I remember being terrified because the sage brush was taller than I was and I couldn't see where I was going. When I finally broke out of the tall grass, I arrived on the side of Fleming Road and within a few seconds a big black car turned down the road as well. What relief! My brothers had come to find me.
How did you know where I was, I asked them once I was snuggled in the front seat between two of them.
When Daisy came home without you, Mother said for us to go and find you. She was scared to death.
I was ashamed and sad that I had upset my mother. Being the empathetic person I have always been, I felt her fear and worry. I was sure my riding days with my friend were over.
But Mother was so happy to see me and find I was not hurt, she didn't scold me and she didn't take away my privileges, my riding with Joyce. She was a mother who listened, and when she heard why I had taken the shortcut, she understood. She just said to me, Pay more attention to the sun next time.
I was told later by one of my brothers that an open well existed in that big field with the tall grass. If I had fallen in it, they might not have found me because no one would have thought I would be in that field.
After that day, I told Mother where I would be riding, and I stayed where I could be found if I had an accident. Today, on Mother's Day, I remember and miss my wonderful mother. She was my anchor, my lighthouse, my security blanket. She was the glue that held our family of nine together. Always in the background, but always a prominent figure, we knew she would listen and understand.