Thoughts on life from Pat Oaks
Last night, we were playing Tommy's game he invented called, The Story Salad. One of the topics was "A Lesson Learned." All of us shared a life lesson we had learned somewhere along the way. I reached back into my memory bank, and told a story that even John boy and Tommy had never heard! I thought I had pretty much revealed my whole life to them! I am betting that Jason has never heard it either.
Here is my "lesson learned."
I went to college in 1958. It was my first time to be on my own. I was 17 years old. I would turn 18 in a month. I went to Milligan college, about a hundred miles away from home. I came home after one semester, feeling as if I had become a grown up and had learned pretty much, in that one semester, all I would ever need to know. I certainly had surpassed my parents in wisdom and knowledge!
As I have written many times, as a parent and as a person, I have always said that my Mother was unsurpassed. She was as near perfect a person that I have ever known. However, Miss "Big Girl on Campus", Pat, was even superior to this "perfect" person, my Mother!
After being home a few days, my Mother looked at me one day and said, "Patricia...you were always the easiest of my children. I never worried about you and you were always a fun child to be around. The room lit up when you came into it! However, since you have been away at college, this is no longer true. You don't even seem like the same child! You are arrogant and hateful. You are not even fun to be around. You need to go off by yourself and think about how you are acting and where you are headed.
I did. I changed that day. I wanted to be the person my Mother had always thought I was. I am not saying I am a wonderful person, but I do try to not be that snob who came home from my first year in college thinking I knew more than anyone else. I will never be the person my Mother was...but I want to be.
My Mother, Lila Forester, in her freshman year at Radford State Teacher's college, Radford, Virginia