Sunday, November 13, 2011

The swing

I had a swing like this when I was a small child
Today I saw a photo of a swing on Facebook and it reminded me of the one I had when I was a little girl of about 5 or 6.  With it came a flood of timeless days swinging and swinging and swinging my days away.  And it also reminded me of a incident which would forever more change how I viewed and swung on that swing.

My dad made the swing for me, from a limb of a huge old tree...the tree which was for the most part the center of a row of trees that lined a steep bank that was several feet above a ditch. I can remember swinging out over that ditch...and out over the edge of the road...just a little...feeling like I was flying.

Being the only child at the time, it was up to me to amuse myself. The tree swing was my most favorite thing...I can remember getting up early in the morning, still in my pajamas and going out to swing until my mom called me back inside.

From my perch there on the swing, I had a wonderful view of the farm where my dad worked...along with all the cows, machinery and barns; my grandpa and grandma's house; a few fields and a plot of woods. I was a princess who often surveyed her royal grounds! 

One day, while dad was working on the farm...and mom was inside doing what mom's did...I was doing what I loved most...swinging in the swing when a car drove very slowly by.  Too slowly. 

Inside were two men, two scary-looking men (in my little girl's eyes) who stared at me causing me to look elsewhere. I can remember feeling suddenly afraid and although I didn't look directly at them again, I could see the car had stopped and started to back up. 

Alarmed...I ran into the house and told my mom about the men...who by then were parked in the driveway and one had come to the door.  I hid behind my mother while she answered the door...but my little child's mind doesn't remember what was said...or why they were there at our door. 

What I do remember though is the relief of their leaving and the praise of my mother who told me that I had done the right thing by coming to her. I often wonder if she sensed something bad about them too. 

From then on, I always was watchful when I was not only outside, but swinging. I think that is when I learned that there are bad people in this world...and I had seen two of them. I didn't swing much on my swing after that...those men robbed me of the pleasure and freedom that the swing meant to me.  Even today, I can feel the sadness of that little girl within...and as a woman, I feel anger that those men could do that to an innocent child. 

Below is a photo of me at the age I was when those men stopped...dressed as a little Princess, in a white sheet and a hair wreath and bracelet made of pop-together beads:

 Thanks for reading!


  1. We never know when something we see will bring back a childhood memory.
    I am glad that nothing bad did happen and you were able to run to your mom.
    Love the picture of you. You were such a pretty little girl.

  2. Thanks, Cynthia.

    I am also glad that something told me to run to mom...who knows what could have happened, ya know?

  3. I loved this, hearing about you & that swing!
    Then it was all ruined by those creepy men - dang it! :-(

    Your mom was lucky that nothing happened when she opened the door to the guy! Scary!

    Great pic of you! :-)

  4. Thanks, Laura! Funny how things spur old memories...the good and the bad. It was mostly good though...I did love that swing! 8 )