I’ve previously mentioned that my husband loves referring to me as a schemer. Once an idea enters my thoughts I work to make it a reality. This particular trait appeared way before meeting him. I’m certain my mom could testify. One example from my childhood stands out clearly above the rest.
I don’t remember exactly our age, definitely younger than ten. The “we” was me and my cousin Rebecca, a great schemer in her own right. Born only twenty days apart, we were always close growing up. Rebecca has five younger sisters. Imagine seven little girls when you added me to the mix!
~Me and Rebecca~
There was one specific instance when I’d been invited to spend a few days with my cousins. We all piled into their Volkswagen Bug and began the thirty-minute drive to their house. During the short trip, Rebecca and I immediately began plotting.
Our scheme? Secretly sneak out of their house and walk several miles down a dirt road to visit her Uncle Jack and his family. Why were we being sneaky? I have no idea! But we were all ready to go the next morning.
There was one small problem. Barbara, one of the younger sisters apparently overheard our conversation and insisted on tagging along. What if we said no? She would tattle on us, of course!
Off went our little trio, down the long driveway, and out onto the dirt road. We were not even past the house when we heard Aunt Mary’s voice, “Rebecca? Kelley? Barbara? Where are you, girls?” We attempted hiding in the ditch, but Barbara started to cry. Shushing her proved impossible and we were quickly discovered.
Our adventure was foiled, and talk about being in trouble. Aunt Mary took a switch to our legs while we ran around the yard like a bunch of chickens. Though the switch didn’t really hurt us, it did help teach us a valuable lesson. Seeing this now as a parent, I’m certain we caused Aunt Mary a great deal of panic. She was, after all, attempting to keep up with seven young girls.
~The six sisters and me all grown up~
Reminiscing over this little adventure has brought lots of laughter over the years. But the best part of the story is yet to come. To this day if we mention it around Aunt Mary, she still feels terrible about switching us! Forty plus years later! She has to be one of the most kind, patient, calm people I’ve ever known. Managing all of us girls while keeping her sanity had to be challenging.
~My mom and her sister, my Aunt Mary~
Did our scheming pay off in the end? Well, not exactly the way we had planned. We did learn an important life lesson about being safe. But even more important, we were reminded then and continue to be reminded now, how much we are loved.
I love you, Aunt Mary