Mom 1933, Welland Canal, Welland Ontario
We are gleaning gems from Used to Be Mother's albums which packed back and forth from British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario. I found this one that that I don't recall ever seeing before. I see her luxuriate thick hair, her shyness and lack of confidence in her pose and her beautiful smile. I notice her feet without deformity and her hands and arms without sun spots.
I know from previous conversations that she wanted to marry, have children and a home of her own. These were the dreams of a woman who came from abject poverty and only a Grade Eight education.
She was shy and blushed easily. Her hair was flaming red and her skin fair. Her modest bathing suit was most likely a hand me down from her older sisters. I know that she started working to help the family. Her father worked seasonally on the Welland Canal and there were 12 children to feed and clothe. Her younger sisters were often beneficiaries of her generosity receiving dolls and new clothing.
As a new bride she came out west to live in unbearable conditions without running water nor electricity. She didn't speak the language and had never been on a farm. I'm told that she had a ready smile for everyone (as evidenced in this picture below). My mother is an example of someone who blooms where she was potted. A person who kept her commitments despite trial and disappointment and few resources. She had a Trojan energy and seldom rested.
For most of the time I have known her, Used to Be Mother felt a little disappointed with life. Her expectations always exceeded reality. It does tickle me, when I visit her now, how that sadness has dispersed. No more tears. No more disappointments. She's at peace.