Overseas, preaching, building schools and churches along side my Dad, is not all my Mom did. We were living in the Dakotas when Mom decided to go back to college and become a real teacher. I say 'real' teacher, because overseas she home schooled my brother and I for several of our young years, before boarding school was a choice.
In grade school my Mom was still going to college and coming home to make us lovely meals nightly. My Father was a stickler on having meals at a certain time and Mom was gracious enough to honor his likes. She worked very hard and would tell me that she wasn't naturally smart. I believe she was though, because, not only did she have a friendly way, she was very well-read on all subjects, especially current events.
I even remember her being in some conference against pornography, a group fundraising for civil rights, and other causes. She was always involved in community and church events.She was quick to laugh, and not at all a fuddy-duddy, as you may picture a missionary minister's wife.
I remember her telling me a story about being at a prayer conference in Africa when all the men decided to go for a swim in the ocean. Their wives all satquietly, complete with sun umbrellas and long skirts, on shore. Mom got on her swim suit, grabbed a ball, and got the group playing volleyball in the surf. Mom, after all was born in Manila, and raised in Hawaii and was an expert swimmer and cliff diver. (These women were a bit shocked, but Mom just believed in being herself, and these women ended up lifelong friends.) As she was out in the ocean with all these missionary guys she had just met, a wave knocked her down. Due to the force of the wave her swimsuit fell to her waist in front of everyone. (A teen at the time, I was aghast at her telling me this embarrassing story in the first place.)! I did, however, ask, "What did you do?" She laughed, and said, "The only thing I could do. I pulled up my suit, and kept playing."I always loved the fact that nothing got her flustered.
By high school, in South Dakota, she was teaching my advanced speech and my English class. I didn't mind that fact, but she did call me ‘darling’ more times than I care to remember… in class! We lived out of town twenty miles,( a town called Twin Brooks, population, 52), so we drove to and from school with each other. As a teen, that was a bit too much time spent with your Mom. We lived right next to our church, and my social life revolved around the church.
In high schoo, to wake me, she always covered me with kisses until I couldn't breathe. She would laugh, and often licked my face! Ewwww! I would get up thoroughly disgusted, running to wash my face laughing at the same time.
I remember her sitting in the bleachers of my high school holding her head very still, facing straight ahead, but with her eyes pointed toward me. She watched me talk to the boys, she watched me laughing with friends, and she busted with pride when I sang.
I always kept in mind that she had an awful childhood. She had a mean stepmother, and was kept in her room during her teen years. She also was a Pearl Harbor attack survivor at 15 yrs. of age. She chaperoned everything at school and was at all church youth outings, and evencarried her own canoe, as a camp counselor in the summer.
Even though it seemed we spent every waking moment together, I understood. Even though she she watched every dance I danced at prom, I understood. She needed to live and love her teen years, through me.
.By cindy Prochnow April 2012