Punishments. It is a part of the growing process when it is done correctly. I was punished as a child. I was given the strap. No wait a minute. My brother and sister hid the strap when we moved one year and I never got it. They say that accounts for the deficiency in my character. Ok, I had a wooden spoon whacked across my backside. I think. I remember the wooden spoon and I remember (sometimes) what I did to deserve it but I’m not sure where I got it. I do remember getting my mouth washed out with soap. Talk about a punishment! It was for spitting and I tell you, it was fifty some odd years ago, and I can still taste the soap and I have never spit again. Period. End of story. Prison wardens have nothing on my mother when it came to punishments. Wait a minute. That wasn’t the best punishment she ever dished out. There is an episode that my sister and I both remember. It was that severe. The anguish that it caused at the time and the pain it can still bring to mind…. My mother was an expert at inflicting just the right punishment. Read on.
My sister and I fought. This is no surprise to anyone with two daughters I am sure. She is older than I am and I always admired her. No wait a minute, I was a kid. I was jealous. As an adult it is admiration, as a kid it is jealousy. I don’t remember what we were fighting about. It was just something we did. We fought. But my mom didn’t care for it. I guess we must have been pretty loud because my mother opened the front door and left. She just left. Her own house. Our fighting had driven our mother away! Talk about a guilt trip! I followed mom down the street to a dead end. She was just sitting on the curb crying. Wow. Powerful imagery for a child. We had made our mom cry. Fifty some years later I can still remember the feel of that curb. Now I am sure my sister and I still fought in those days but we never again drove our mother out of the house. At least I don’t remember. (My sister and I are now adults and we don’t fight – but that is for another book).