Spreading love, joy, peace, faith & unity


Remembering Back

I first posted this poem back in 2012 on this JanBeek blog. I have revived it today because most of you were not my followers to see this back 8 years ago!

In 1991 I wrote a poem for my mom to wish her a Happy Birthday. With the framed poem, I gave her the ceramic teeter-totter you see pictured above.

The piece is a wind-up music box that plays “Playmates” as the little mice go up and down. She always had the poem and music box with her the next fourteen years as she was in and out of hospitals, rehab facilities, and nursing homes. When she died, I inherited them – and I treasure the memories they bring to mind.

Mom’s Cousin

My mom had a cousin close to her age, Madge Pickering, who lived with mom’s family when she was a child. Eventually Madge married and moved into a home of her own. She and her husband had two sons, Ronnie & Donnie.

Mom married and moved to California where my sister and I were born. I loved meeting and spending time with my cousins when we would go to spend Christmas vacation back in Washington with Mom’s family.

Stayin’ in and Losin’ Touch

Through the years I have stayed in touch with the older of those two cousins, Ronnie. He is near my age. However, I had lost touch with Ronnie’s little brother, Donnie, until a Saturday about a decade ago. Found out Donnie also lives here in Montana now!

Donnie, whom I had not seen in 60 years, and his wife, Patti, came to spend Labor Day weekend with Bob and me about ten years ago. What a treat! We reminisced and told stories and went through family photos and various family “artifacts.”

One of my inherited treasures is a letter written on the occasion of our mutual great-grandparents’ 50th wedding anniversary. They were married September 1, 1875. The letter is “A Saga of the Valley” – the valley in and around North Bend and Fall City, Washington where my mother and Donnie’s mom were born and raised. The letter was typed on onion skin, is brittle and faded, and hard to read – but is is legible.

I retyped it and sent it to my newly reacquainted cousin, Donnie. I trust he shared it with his daughter who is into the study of genealogies.

Treasuring Memories

As I was headed into the office to my computer, I spotted the ceramic teeter-totter music box. I realized I had forgotten to share that artifact with Donnie. His mom, like mine, was a devoted mother who was wonderfully supportive of her two sons. I hope he appreciated this funky little poem. I didn’t hear back from him. But, now – a decade later, it is more true than ever… and I know he will concur:

Life is Like a Teeter-Totter!

Life is like a teeter-totter –
Full of ups and downs.
Kids learn to roll and toss with it,
To shake away the frowns,
If they have a loving home
To lean back and reminisce on when they roam.

Life is like a teeter-totter –
Full of bounces and of bumps.
Kids learn to rock with a jolly jump
And shake away the lumps
If they have a loving mother
To hug them tight and with kisses smother.

Life is like a teeter-totter –
It works better in pairs,
They keep each other balanced
And handle love in shares
If they have had their mother’s arms
To guard against abuse and harms.

Life is like a teeter-totter –
Full of laugh and silly giggle.
Full of noise and wonderment –
Girls to squeeze and boys that wiggle –
If they have been secure in love
Both from home’s hearth and God above.

Thank you, Mom, for filling my life
With love… more ups than downs, for sure.
You seemed to know my every need;
For every hurt you had a cure.
Happy Birthday, Mother dear –
I thank God each day that you are near!

God Bless our Moms!!

Mom, me, Dad, and my sis, Sally
(Hah, some things never change…
I wore that necklace with a new blouse just yesterday)

I hope you have had a Memorable Mother’s Day.
What memories do you treasure of your mom??
JanBeek ;o)

Comments on: "Life is Like a Teeter-Totter" (18)

  1. What a beautiful poem and a wonderful post Jan! Your posts always warm my heart. How special to be reunited with your cousin. Thank you for sharing this delightful story from your life. Blessings all around!
    Love and hugs, Gina

    • Yes, it is a gift to be able to reunite with long-lost relatives/friends – isn’t it? Thank you for visiting, Gina. I thought of you – when I read the word “balance” in my 22year old poem. Life is a balancing act in more ways than one. Bless you, dear friend!

  2. I wish I had the talent to write a marvelous poem like that for you, too, mother dear! You have been a fantastic mom throughout the years……and don’t you forget it!!!

  3. That is a beautiful poem – and a loving tribute to your mother. I can see why she treasured it. Thank you for sharing….Blessings – Patty

  4. Thank you for the kind remarks. Blessings to you, too, Patty. I need to go see what you were up to today! ;o)

  5. A lovely poem of sound sense.

  6. Jan just a beautiful post and fabulous poem such a beautiful share.. and so true, life is full of ups and downs…
    What a great treasure too that letter must be.. <3
    I hope Mothers Day for you was a great one.. Ours was back in late March..
    Sending LOVE and and Hugs Jan…
    much love dear Jan <3

    • Thank you so much, Sue. I didn’t realize Mother’s Day was a different date where you live. The important thing is that we all set aside at least one day per year to honor our mom’s (in addition to individually on their birthdays) – do likewise for our dads. “Honor thy father and mother” every day as well!

      • Exactly Jan… and this year our Father’s Day is 21st June.. 🙂 If we all honoured each other and our planet.. this world would be a much better place.. <3 Sending HUGE hugs <3

      • Yes, let’s do just that… honor and assist one another. Make the world a better place – right in the corner where you live! That’s what my consecutive blog #111 is about today!

  7. Jan, I enjoyed a bit of your family history. The Teeter-Totter poem is a delight to read. Your theme works wonderfully. I am amazed with my mother because (with my father’s help) she raised six children (five boys and a girl). The first four boys were born in 1956, 1956, 1958, and 1960. Amazing!

    • We’re the first two twins or were they born 10-12 months apart?? 4 boys that close together sounds like a real challenge! Was the girl youngest?

  8. 💕💕💕
    This is gorgeous…
    Happy mothers day!

  9. beautiful!

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