When She Had Endless New Years

Re-posting because I’m into remembering my mother and her mother as well. They were stoic women I should have admired more when they were alive.

Red's Wrap

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She had dozens of New Years before she knew the end was near. Eighty six of them.

The young woman in this picture, with one hand in her pocket and the other on the arm of her husband, is my grandmother. She’s not looking at the camera. She is looking off to the side. And as many times as I’ve seen this photograph, I’ve not figured out where her gaze was aimed.

All I know about my grandmother is what she told me. It wasn’t much. She was born in rural Michigan. She finished school and then became a teacher in a one-room schoolhouse. She married at 26, after most people had labeled her an old maid, and she immediately quit teaching because, then, at the turn of the century, being a married woman made one unsuitable for teaching children.

She married a widower with one son. And she took…

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