2018 Life Logs, Day 147—A Little Light at the End of Dreary Day
Date: Sunday, May 27, 2018
Weather: Overcast, Rainy, and Cool; High 65, Low 51 F
Location: Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA
The light that came at the end of this dreary day had nothing to do with the weather. The weather was consistently cool, wet, and miserable throughout. But at 7 pm, I decided to watch a PBS Ken Burns 2-hour program on the Roosevelts—Eleanor and Franklin. It immediately took me back to my early childhood days. From the time I became aware of the world, I was told by my father that Franklin Delano Roosevelt was to be revered next to God. I didn’t know what that meant, but I knew that FDR was a very important person in my father’s life. My mom and dad were married in 1924. They were both teenagers, my mother 15 and my father 19. They had three children before the financial crash in 1929. Two of those three died young, but then my parents went on to have three more children between 1931 and 1935. My parents were living through the Depression, but they were losing hope. Then when FDR was elected in 1932, things began to change. He gave them the hope the so desperately needed. I didn’t come along until 1947, an afterthought for sure, but the positive influence FDR had on their lives was still very much alive. And somehow as a young child I began to admire FDR’s wife, Eleanor. Move forward to the spring of 1960. By this time, I was in seventh grade and had just been selected to be head cheerleader in my junior high school. I thought of myself as a serious student, but being a cheerleader gave a different impression to others. That spring, I was interviewed by the school newspaper and asked who I would be if I could choose to be anyone. I immediately answered without hesitation, “Eleanor Roosevelt.” I won’t go into how much grief I got for that choice when it was published. To my friends, Eleanor Roosevelt was an old, ugly woman. Why in the world would anyone want to be her? I had my answer to that, but none of my friends wanted to listen. Tonight, when I watched the program, it made me proudly stand by my 1960 selection. Eleanor was a woman who fought for the rights of people that others would not stand up for her entire life. I am proud that I made that selection in 1960 and watching the program brought a little light at the end of a dreary day.
Today was supposed to be garden planting day, but the weather was not encouraging. Despite that, I was out early to complete getting the bagged garden soil into the third raised bed. I have been lugging these heavy bags for days and have been worried that my back might not be able to handle it. But lifting the weight didn’t seem to be a problem. But this morning after I got the soil into the bed, I picked up the rake to level the soil. I reached across to pull the rake back towards me, and that was it. The weak disc in my lower back pulled sideways and that was that. This has been a persistent problem for me for the past 20 years, but through exercise and the help of good chiropractors, I have been able to avoid the problem for the past few years. At least this time, I am still upright, albeit a bit bent over. But I can function until Tuesday when I hope to get an appointment with my activator chiropractor who can right things. An activator chiropractor does not physically manipulate your back. He uses a tool called an activator to apply the slightest bit of pressure in just the right places to get my spine back in alignment. Until then, I will have to take it a bit easy. But I am still hoping to get planting done in my gardens and in Heather’s tomorrow afternoon. But before planting in the afternoon, I will go to the morning Memorial Day Parade and ceremony in downtown Falmouth. This afternoon I took Sam to practice as he will be one of five Scouts who will carry the flags. The other three Scouts who showed up for the practice were all so much older than Sam. He has just moved up to Boy Scouts from Cub Scouts, so it is an honor to be chosen to be Honor Guard for tomorrow. I might not be able to stand for the whole ceremony, but I certainly don’t want to miss watching him marching in the parade and being one of the five presenting the flags for this ceremony.