Edith Andersen

Welcome to my blog of ruminations and essays.

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My children’s memories differ from mine. “Mamma, you said you would babysit the kids every Saturday, October through April?” I recall saying, “I will babysit for you one Saturday between October and April.” Grandkids have good memories. “Amma, you said I could climb the oak tree at the playground when I turned six.” I believe Kai. The fact I don’t remember saying it holds no water in my bucket with holes. But now I wonder, is there a way to putty the holes?

The art of living. When you see it, you recognize it. It’s the simplest of actions and the healthiest of emotions. It’s living in balance with the present. It’s an old man sitting on a bench tossing breadcrumbs to birds. It’s me as a child looking out my bedroom skylight to watch the stars, the Milky Way, and the Aurora Borealis. It is you, eating a tangerine one section at a time.

The leeches were tough to pull off and left a mark that resembled a Mercedes-Benz logo. That may have been wishful thinking or a way to drown out my kids’ yelling for me to save them. Taking pity on them, an unfazed elder told them to sprinkle salt on the wormy critters (aka filthy little devils), and they’d fall off. They did.

A friend disagrees with me on the issue of ERA. She claims that discrimination between the genders doesn’t exist. Let’s say my friend is right. Women enjoy all the rights men have. But wouldn’t that in itself be a reason to read about our sisters who earned us that right? Of course, this is a pet peeve of mine. It’s when my kids go, “Mom, don’t go there.”

We rarely talk about what frightens us, but we all have dark places we don’t want to visit. The thought that harm would come to our children shakes us to the core and keeps us awake at night. It’s what made Sophie’s Choice, having to decide which of her two children will live and which will die is gut-wrenching. Aging and death are dark places we’d rather not visit.

It was breast milk with its protein that helped us evolve and grow bigger brains. No wonder breastfeeding (with a few exceptions) was revered throughout the ages. It was Hera’s breastmilk that made Hercules invincible and formed the Milky Way (or so the story goes). Baby Jesus suckling at Mary’s breast is one of the most endearing…

le who showed me kindness. A nurse at the sanatorium who stopped by my bed to stroke my face before she left work. The high school teacher who tolerated my rebellious ways and listened instead of punishing. The woman I waited on at the Fireside Lounge…