This is what is on my mind…. Since I have been staying inside for lockdowns, I have been doing a lot of thinking, as you know. And so, my treks are in planning stage. I plan to do more research of this area when I feel better about being outside. I feel like I am “home”, and, I have several places I plan to go when it gets warmer. I need to go. Why? I don’t know why. I just do.
I love the building in the above picture. Wow. And, spring is here and in the air. I can feel it. Buds are appearing on trees, and different flowers are in the plant shops. And it is light longer during the day. Great! I love spring. Hope and new life are within reach. AND, it is my year – The Chinese Year of the Ox! A good one for me, for sure.
I have thought a lot about my family of late. You know, you only have one family and every family has issues. My Thought for the DAY: Your beliefs become your thoughts, your thoughts become your words, your words become your actions, your actions become your habits, your habits become your values, and your values become your destiny.
As a result of looking at my destiny, I have begun to understand more things. I think that is good. I have done a lot of research about Daddy’s mother, and now things have made more sense to me. I was planning to write about my findings, but I am rethinking that. Maybe things are better left unsaid. Maybe. I am still thinking about it. It is a wonderful story of strength, love, and forgiveness. It is a wonderful story of choices and priorities. My plan was to do a “Once upon a time….”. And, I would have fun writing it. This was her wedding dress. She married June 1, 1897.
Daddy was an amazing man. So was his mother. And I understand his father now. Even more than people remember. I have discovered it. And it all makes sense to me. I am very happy that I know now. Secrets that adults keep from children. I know the secrets. And, I love them for keeping them from me.
Plus, these things don’t mean anything to others. They have their own family secrets. But, somehow, it matters. Daddy did a lot to help entire area, and now it all makes sense to me. I lived it. And I am a dying generation. So, maybe it needs to be told. Maybe. I need strength and energy to write it. So, we’ll see. Pray for me to be about to do this if I am supposed to. Through my eyes……
You see, when you start trying to recreate someone else’s world, you get outside of yourself and see through different eyes. I have always enjoyed doing that. That is why I loved acting so much. In working with Daddy and his mother, Mary Tallulah Dickson, I recreated her world and childbirth, and five little babies she loved, and how she dealt with those problems in her world at that time in a small town in Georgia. Most of her family of origin lived in Texas at the time. The family moved to Texas (Wharton County – in the middle of nowhere – LAMPASAS, TX (near Houston) when she was 10. And at that time, she cooked and cleaned for her father, her stepmother, and three more half-siblings. She was born in 1872 in the middle of nowhere, Alabama (Pine Level), on a plantation. Her real mother died in childbirth when she was 4. (1874)And, she cared for her brothers and sister a long time because she was the oldest. Three siblings and later – three half-siblings. It was a lot of work.
So when she went to teach art at a private girls’ college in another state, she was glad to get away from all of that. Now, you cannot just imagine what it was like without remembering a different world. Things were rough. Life was raw. Indians. Woods. No television or machines. No cars. How did she learn to paint- watercolor? I don’t know. Why did she apply to that college? I don’t know. Why did they accept her? I don’t know. She was tall. Pretty. Strong-willed. She probably “surrendered” about that time. My thoughts on “surrender” – “Surrender is the ultimate sign of strength and the foundation for a spiritual life. Surrendering affirms that we are no longer willing to live in pain. It expresses a deep desire to transcend our struggles and transform our negative emotions. It commands a life beyond our egos, beyond that part of ourselves that is continually reminding us that we are separate, different and alone. Surrendering allows us to return to our true nature and move effortlessly through the cosmic dance called life. It’s a powerful statement that proclaims the perfect order of the universe.–
Fell in love or became interested in a party boy – the son of a Baptist preacher. He was 20 years older than she was. Moody. Experimented with the drugs of that day – opium. I don’t know if I have a picture of him. She helped him with a feed store. And, fertilizer store. At a time when women did not work. But, she did. They had five little babies, Two girls and three boys. And, he kept trying to kill himself. She kept all of it running. And, they bought a big house with a lot of bedrooms and a barn. She was terrified he would kill himself. She reallly loved her babies. And, one night he did. Hung himself in the barn. Ugh. Oh, the shame of all of it! And one of the babies (a son), found his father hanging in the barn the next morning, July 19, 1909. Talk about trauma. Image living with that picture in your mind forever. My uncle Beamus, his namesake, did. Ed, Jr. (Uncle Beamus) was almost 10 at the time.
Well, what happened after that is a story of survival that is so full of love and strength and giving that I still cry when I think of the beauty and the strength of it. Above are her pictures. She was in her 20’s at that time. Tall. Straight as an arrow. Strong. Relentless in her love and protection for her five babies. Mary was the oldest. She was 11.
Ok. That just gives you a taste of my world in my mind as I look out my window over Paris.
I feel the presence of Mary Tallulah in my blood. Giving me strength. Helping me through my fear. Wow. What a heritage. From Tyrone County in Ireland. And, Scotland. I need to visit there. Hope to.
Stay tuned. Wait until you hear my version of what it was like being young in my home growing up, and what Daddy had to deal with…… Along with Mother and the three of us girls. From a feed and fertilizer store to an international company and business. Wow!
Love from my home in Paris, Jay