My first conscious memory of being alive

My first conscious memory of being alive, is playing in the front yard, with a couple of bottles and a tub of water.   I remember dipping water from the tub to fill one bottle with another.  I either, remember the house looking like it was a daylight basement of was built up from the ground.  There was a crude set of rough wood stairs to the small landing by the front door, as I remember or was told. 

I remember falling off the landing and screaming my head off.  In those days no one went to the Doctor, unless you were bleeding a lot.  I do remember lying across my mother’s lap while she pulled the edges together with adhesive tape to stop the bleeding.   I never had it stitched up and it healed with a big scar (remember I was little)!

Keep this in mind as I jump ahead to 8 years of age.  I think I was in the first grade, and remember complaining of a tummy ache a lot, to get the usual remedy, baking soda and water.  I guess I must have done this a lot because after a while no one paid a lot of attention, and just gave me the remedy.  This night I didn’t stop crying and complaining.  After they realized that I was feverish, off to the Doctors office I went.  The doctor examined me and immediately wanted me sent to the hospital.  I was scared to death!! I put it off by insisting that they take me home to wash my feet (we ran around barefooted all summer).  My dad used to tease me by saying “You’ve got diritfication on your feet”.

In 1948 people that have ruptured appendix did not always live.  Mine did rupture and I lived.  Tough!  In those days you were supposed to stay flat on your back in the hospital for two weeks.  I am sure that I gave the nurses several headaches as I sent back to bed several times a day.  When I went home I had the place of honor on the couch by the stove in the living room, while my brothers had to sleep upstairs in the cold.  We had a huge dog named Rex and I hitched my sled up to him and he hauled me around for hours. 

When I finally went back to school I enjoyed showing my scars to anyone that would look.  I also told them that “When the Doctor was operating on me his knife slipped and went right straight through me and he had to sew me up on both sides”.  And to prove it I showed the scar on my belly and the one on my back.  Kids will be kids!



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