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Upon Their Hands They Will Carry you
Page 14

Make An Impression

Uncle Dennis wasnít as handsome as Clark Gable who played Rhett Butler in Gone With The Wind, but that was where the difference stopped. He was well-dressed, fine mannered, a gentleman of the south in every other way. His grandmother of Kentucky was a strong-willed woman it was told. She certainly made an impression on her grandchildren.

When we speak of a person being clean and well-dressed today, usually it means their sweats just came out of the dryer. In contrast it was a regular chore for him to carry his clothing back and forth to the cleaners. When he returned to the ranch from town, he brought two things with him. One was groceries and the other were the plastic-covered hangers which held clean, pressed suits and freshly ironed shirts. Handkerchiefs for his pocket matched his ties and were of the same fabric. Rich looking Cowboy boots usually always accompanied his expensive selection of clothing and those boots were equally as costly. To complete his ensemble was the ever present clean and sharp 3x Beaver Stetson Hat. A professional blocker of hats kept it that way.

"Iím so happy to see you!" I ran out the door of our small house to greet him as he drove up. My uncle was, indeed, welcome. As much as I wanted to be a part of my husbandís family there was not a comfortable feeling of trust with them, yet. The advice and direction I needed were here with my own.

Uncle Dennis raised his family and they were off and gone busy with their lives. The time he spent raising them was recorded as experience and this gave him knowledge for knowing what to do, it seemed, in any situation.

I spoke to him of the events involving the center, the appointments for therapy and what had happened along the way. He listened quietly and when I handed him the bottle of pills Rodís aunt gave me he was suddenly alert.

"You donít need these." This was all he said.

The bathroom in the tiny house was all but in the front room and was actually just steps away. He took the few steps toward that door, quietly shook the pills out into the toilet and flushed them. Nothing else was said about that.

"Iím not sure about what Iím doing. Always before I had you, or Mother, or Dad to counsel me. This is just all too much." This was no exageration.

"You have a spiritual family, you know. Any where in the world you have them." Uncle Dennis was always able to make an impression on a person with a few words. There were times when he would joke with me.

"Well, you donít need a ball bat to make an impression on someone!" He would laugh and this is how he approached a problem.

So it was, we were busy about town, meeting new acquaintances one or another we then called, "The Friends."

One man owned a farm equipment supply. His home was just across from the business. When I met his wife, we instantly liked each other. She had Indian blood, about as much as I. This gave us a bond instantly. They informed me of the time and place where meetings were held. How little I knew then, time and unforeseen circumstances would make such heavy happenings upon all our lives. To be able to see into the future wasnít a problem at the time. All I was going to learn was how the hurt of struggling through Rhondaís condition was no longer something I would have to do alone.

Uncle Dennis was in his element. He was a people person, as the saying goes. He loved making new friends. Somehow or another he could fit into their lives as easily as if he was their dear uncle instead of mine. Some even referred to him as Uncle Dennis.

My life suddenly was tied up with Bible study, community service through Bible study and socializing with my new friends.

"Do you think Uncle Dennis, your husband, Rhonda and you could come to a get together we are having this weekend?" So it was this busy little college town congregation had life and were educated in all the social amenities.

All the stumbling blocks around the circumstances with my child being with me seemed to be thumped away by some larger hand. Most were aware Rhonda had injuries and certainly knew about the therapy but all were so polite not a question was asked. They simply accepted us, as is, to use one of Motherís expressions. This was a bright and happy time in our lives despite what we had come through.

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