Tuesday, March 16, 2010

My Mother Knew......

It was the summer of 1960, the summer I turned 13. I went several days a week to a swim club to meet my friends. My mother drove me there and picked me up every time I went. I would go across the street to a toy store to use the phone to call my mother and wait there for her to pick me up. The owner of the store was nice to me. He made me feel grown up. He talked to me and said nice things. I started swimming and hanging out with my friends less and hanging out at the toy store longer before I called my mother.

At some point during the summer he asked me if I wanted to work for him there a few hours a week. I asked my mother if I could and she said no.  She told me that I could not go to the toy store any more to use the phone. I was mad. I thought she was being unfair. I wrote "I hate Mother" on pieces of cardboard and put them all over the house. She turned them all over and wrote "I love Jeanie" on the other side and didn't come close to changing her answer.

My mother never went into the toy store, never met the owner who was nice to me, but she knew. He was being nice to me for a reason. He wanted me to work in the store for a reason.  His reasons were not good. It was not until I looked back on the toy store owner's  behavior years later that I realized what my mother knew when I was 13.

The 12th of this month would have been my mother's 96th birthday. She died at 51 when I was 18. I didn't get to have her long enough, but I was lucky to have her as long as I did.


  1. There's something special about the moms of the 50's and 60's. My mom was also very intuitive and could read people very quickly.

    I'm sorry you lost your mom at such an early age. 51 years old is way too young to leave this world.

    Thoughtful post; I enjoyed it!

  2. Wow Jeanie. Saved. My mom died at 53 when I was 26. It's hard to go through life without your mama. you know what i like the best about your story? Your mom wrote I love you on all those cards.

  3. Wow, Jeanie, this was a powerful post. There wasn't a name bandied about for child predators back then. Sure, the name existed, but no one spoke directly about it. Mom was paying attention and she knew something wasn't right about the situation.

    I adore the cardboard signs you both wrote on.

    Well-told. Very well-told.

  4. It's also possible that your mom had had a toy store man in her younger life as well, and knew the signs.

  5. God bless your mother and God bless you.

    {And God bless me too... I'm 51. Yikes!}

    Mothers really DO know best. And yours had sharp instincts. Would that all mothers did. We have lots of abducted, assaulted, and murdered children in these parts and it's really no coincidence that they go missing in areas where the concentration of child and sexual predators are highest.

    Haleigh Cummings.
    Sommer Thompson.
    Christopher Barrios.
    Jessica Lunsfors.
    Caylee Anthony.

    Shall I go on?

    I am so happy that your mother chose to make an unpopular decision to keep you safe. It's hard to understand as children, but it becomes crystal clear when we know a little bit more about the world around us and how evil it can sometimes be.

    Love you Jeanie. My thoughts are with you and your mom.

  6. i wish my mother had been as wise as yours. you were lucky to have her as long as you did.

    "Oh, he occasionally takes an alcoholiday." - Oscar Wilde

    Wordless Wednesday - Sláinte!

  7. This makes me cry. I am so happy for you and so sad for my little girl years. I did tell my mother about her brother and I was not protected. So I have to tell you how blessed you were to have a mother protect you and love you like that. Hugs.

  8. She sounds like a wise woman! I´m so glad she was able to spare you a bad experience.
    Thanks for sharing her with us.

    Hugs, Betty

  9. God bless wise mothers. Where would we be without them. I'm so sorry you lost yours at such a young tender age. I'm sure she is sendin' big old heavenly kisses and braggin' to the angels about her great daughter!!!

    Have a great day!!!

  10. oh jeanie. this was a wonderful wonderful post. it needs to be published somewhere. i love how she wrote i love jeanie on the other side. what a mom. it is so sad you had her for such a short time, but it sounds as if she gave you so much when she was here. God bless you.

  11. Oh, Jeanie. What a lovely tribute to your mother. How terrifying to think how close you came to being in a horrible situation. But how wonderful that your mother's vigilance saved you.

  12. What a wonderful mom!

    My mom had good intuition with people too. I seem to remember her saying "Something just doesn't seem right." ALOT.

  13. Whoa!! Powerful post! Moms are the best. Mine's gone too, but her voice of common sense still rings in my head. I consider it a gift that she left me.

  14. Bless your mum! She certainly knew best and cared dearly.I enenjoyed this lovely post.

  15. Beautiful tribute to your mother, God bless her, and you. I'm sure she's still watching over you now.

  16. I can tell by the way you write about her that your mom was a very wise and wonderful person. I miss my mom, too. Moms are very special people and I am sure those pennies you find are right straight from your mom in heaven. Have a good weekend.

  17. God gave women intuition for a reason. Hers was right on the mark. I'm sorry you lost her so early.

  18. That is the way I feel about my mom. She died at 38 way to young!! But I am so glad she was my mom!!

  19. I love how she turned the signs over and put her own message on them but never told you how she felt about him. I'm so glad she was looking out for you.