Just Folks Getting By Part 15

The mail ran just as Lucille finished up the dishes. ¬†“Mama, you got a letter from Shirley.”

Lucille dried her hands on her apron, poured a cup of coffee and sat down to read it. ¬† “Here Jenny, sit with me.”

Dear Mama and Jenny.

Thanks so much for the baby’s christening picture. ¬†She looks like an angel. ¬†Jenny, you are sure getting your figure back. ¬†I’m still carrying ten pounds from when I had Marty. ¬†I hate that. ¬†Seems like it gets harder after it every baby. ¬†Martin’s brother Perry is talking about getting married again. ¬†You remember his wife left him and Judy for the doctor she was working with and they moved off to Henderson. ¬†Well, he’s been going with a widowed schoolteacher with a little boy and they’re talking about getting married at Christmas. ¬†Mama Benson’s been living with Perry and Judy ever since Fran left. ¬†You remember she said she was tired of keeping up this big, old house, just for herself, so we bought it. I don’t know where she’ll live after Perry marries. ¬†It’s our house now. ¬†You live in the garage apartment, and I’m not about to put you out. ¬†She’s not an easy woman to live with.

The kids sure are enjoying their summer, but not as much as I am. ¬†I wish I didn’t ever have to go back. ¬†Kids don’t know teachers are as happy about summer as they are. ¬†P I’ve got plenty here to keep me busy. ¬†The oldest two are taking swimming lessons. ¬†Better close and get this in the mail.

Love, Shirley

“Oh, Jenny! ¬†What if Mrs. Benson decides she wants to move in with them? ¬†It was her house to start with. I should have never put my three thousand dollars in fixing that nice apartment in the garage. ¬†That’s ’bout all I had left. ¬†I can’t afford to buy a house or pay rent. ¬†I am sixty-eight years old, way too old to be trying to go back to work. ¬†If Martin feels like he has to move his mama in there, I won’t have no place to go.” ¬†Lucille felt like she’d hit bottom.

“Now Mama, don’t go borrowing trouble. ¬†Nobody’s said a word about Mrs. Benson moving in with Shirley. ¬†You don’t even know for sure she won’t stay on with Perry after he marries. ¬†Martin and Shirley bought her house. ¬†She has no claim on it. ¬†Whatever happens, none of your kids will let you do without. ¬†You know that.”

“I do know that, Jenny, but I thought I was settled and don’t want to move again. ¬†I’m gittin’ to old to worry like this. ¬†Sometimes, I just wish I could go on and be with Russ. I think I’ll go lay down awhile. ¬†I’ll do them dishes later.” ¬†Lucille trudged back to her bedroom.