“I Should Have Stayed in Bed”
by Joan Y. Edwards
On June 14, 1971 I should have stayed in bed. In hindsight, it might have been the best thing to do. It was my daughter, Lorrie’s third birthday. I woke up…looked in the mirror, and said to myself. Just look at your hair. It’s so straight you could draw a straight line with it. With your hair looking like that, people coming to your daughter’s birthday party will take up a collection for you. I thought if Dolly Parton can wear a wig, I can, too. So I put on a wig of long, chestnut curls. Now, I was ready to face the day. I was glamorous.
First, I baked yeast bread. It turned out hard. I dropped it in the trash quickly so my husband, Alvin, wouldn’t see my failure as a bread baker. The brick bread made a big loud BUMP THUD.
My husband hollered from the other room, “What in the world was that?”
What could I say? Possible choices:
1. “Just the bread I made, dear. Fresh from the oven.”
2. “Oh, I just dropped my cook book.”
3. “The upstairs neighbor fell through the ceiling.”
I swallowed my pride and told him what really happened. Lucky for me, there was a loaf of French bread in the freezer. I sliced it and spread garlic butter over it. I toasted it under the broiler after the spaghetti was ready.
I boiled noodles to compliment my famous delicious spaghetti sauce that simmered on the stove. I took the pot of noodles to the sink to drain the water off. As I was pouring off the water, my hand slipped. Instead of only the water draining off, all 100 strands of pasta fell out of the pot and slithered down into the garbage disposal.
Luckily, a neighbor loaned me two boxes of angel pasta. I started over again. I put a big clean pot in the sink to drain the pasta over next time.
My mother, my husband’s sisters, and other guests arrived for the party. We ate supper. Then I carried the Holly Hobbie cake that Lorrie’s Aunt Betty baked and decorated just for her. I lit the candles. I leaned way over to get all the candles lit.
I heard my mother say, “Oh, dear. The child’s hair is on fire!”
I leaned in closer to look at Lorrie’s hair. However, Lorrie’s hair wasn’t on fire. She was sitting patiently waiting to blow out her candles. She was just fine. I was relieved.
All of a sudden I realized that my Mother’s child was me. My hair was on fire. I ran to the sink, pulled my wig off, and ran water over it. All my glamour sizzled and melted in two seconds. It was definitely a bad hair day.
The rest of the day went well. Lorrie loved her cake and the gifts.
Everyone laughed. I had to admit that it was funny. Being able to laugh at myself, helped me enjoy the rest of the day. I had funny stories to share for many years to come. I learned to bake bread. I learned to strain the water from pasta without dropping the noodles in the garbage disposal. I kept my wigs away from flaming candles.
I’m glad I didn’t miss Lorrie’s third birthday. It was fortunate that I got out of bed that morning, after all.
Thanks for reading my blog. I hope you enjoyed my story, “I Should Have Stayed in Bed.” All of these things happened, they didn’t all happen on the same day. They happened years apart, but my wig actually caught fire on Lorrie’s third birthday. Her Aunt Betty really baked and decorated a Holly Hobbie cake for her. My wig was really short hair. I fictionalized parts of the story to make it seem like things were stacked against me, to make it funnier.
Stack things against your main character in your story. Your main character is strong. He or she will work his way out of the trouble, into more trouble, and you’ll have a prize-winning story.
Do something to celebrate being you!
Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2011 Joan Y. Edwards