More Lessons from Mom, part 3
The photo for this post is my header – one of my mom’s clay creations.
Lesson: Always take time for yourself.
Mom took pottery classes for years when I was small. Once a week, for twelve weeks in the fall and twelve in the spring, Mom put on jeans, her old tennis shoes, and an old t-shirt, pulled back her hair and drove down the hill in Cross Lanes into downtown Charleston for pottery class. I’m sure her participation had something to do with spending time away from her three kids (or four, if you count Dad, which Mom sometimes did). Dad always worried about Mom driving by herself after dark, in the teeming metropolis of Charleston, West Virginia.
“Steve, I’ll be fine. I grew up in Charleston, remember? I walked all over that city after dark when I was a kid, I think I’ll be OK inside the car, and yes, I’ll remember to lock the doors.”
Mom brought home bowls and plates, vases and pots. She made a honey pot, with a lid that fit perfectly, with a notch cut out for the wooden honey stick. She also made a garlic pot, with several cut-outs around it, to let the garlic “breathe.” She made several pocket wall hangings. One with an oval back had three pockets, each with a fluted edge. Mom filled that one with dried flowers and hung it on a leather thong. It is still hanging on my grandparent’s kitchen wall.
Once or twice Mom took me down into the basement clay studio at Garnet Career Center to pick up some of her work. There she said “hi” to people I had never seen before. People who knew only Mom. Not Dad, not someone from church, or our relatives. It was the first time I realized that Mom had an existence beyond what I knew.