You would think that being the minister’s daughter would mean
that my life was easy. Not! I was looked at and judged harshly growing up. Not by my parents but by the town around me. Innocent childhood pranks became town gossip.
I wasn’t a bad kid. My
parents loved and adored me. But time and time again, I got into trouble. My mom used to say that if sixteen other people did what I did, then only I was the one caught.
Here’s a little taste of one adventure:
Sundays were always a busy time at our house. Dad often woke up before anyone else and spent hours in his office working on the sermon of the day. He loved to pepper the scriptures with stories of his childhood and of us kids. We were the best lessons for living right he’d say.
I could hear mom puttering around in the kitchen. She loved to plan a big brunch for when we got home for church which meant a lot of prep work before we left. She had laid out my dress the night before. The dress was white and made of white cotton eyelet material that made me feel like a princess even though I was just eight-years-old.
Dresses were reserved for Sundays and I had to always put them on and take them off right before and after church. They weren’t for playtime! But this morning I couldn’t resist. The dress had the most beautiful purple satin sash that was silky to the touch that tied around my waist. I’d already spent twenty minutes running the ribbon sash through my hands and over my face. The feel of it tantilizing my senses.
“No one will ever know,” I said as I donned the beautiful gown over my white undershirt and pink flowered underwear.
Slipping on white socks and white pattened leather shoes, I stood and looked in my mirror. “Yes, Prince Charming, I would love to dance with you.”
Dancing around the room, feeling the breeze on my face was a heady experience. The idea of looking so grown up enticed me to day dreaming about my future prince.
The sound split the fantasy in my head.
Glancing toward my window I saw a small black cat stuck in the crook of the branches outside my window. Never one to leave an animal in need nor ever leave an animal alone, I opened my window and pushed up the screen that kept me from my heart’s desire.
“Hello, little kitty. What are you doing here? You shouldn’t be up so
That was an understatement. My room was on the second floor so the small frightened kitten must have climbed about ten feet into the tree to find itself stuck outside my window.
Leaning out the window, I couldn’t reach the kitten. He must have been too afraid to come to me, a stranger, so I did the only thing that I could think of…I climbed out the window.
“Don’t worry kitty. I’m coming to get you.” I said bravely, as I carefully climbed over the window sill and out onto a strong looking branch.
Slowly I made my way closer and closer to the kitten, whose nails appeared to be embedded into the tree’s bark. Finally reaching the kitten, I looked down. What a mistake that was. Now I was too far away from my bedroom window to go back and climbing down wasn’t an option.
“Thanks kitty. Looks like we both are going to need saving.”
Clinging to the branch next to wear the kitten was holding on for dear life, I was a vision in white and began praying for a miracle. I could hear the phone ringing inside the house. Turning when I heard a voice down below, my fingers slipped on the rough bark, causing me to fall to the branch on my stomach. The sharp bark scratched my leg as I twisted and pain cut into me. Gripping the branch tightly, I feared falling to my death. A trickle of what could only be blood began to slip down my right leg.
“Oh kitty, you have surely gotten me into trouble this time.”
Which is just how the town found me, wearing my once beautiful Sunday dress, my flowered panties for everyone to see, blood dripping down my leg, and holding on for dear life. There was even a picture on the front page of the newspaper of the local firemen using their ladder truck to get me down.
John Stempt, the fireman, ruffled my hair as he plucked me from the tree branch. “Little Wolfe, don’t you know that wolves don’t climb trees. Leave it for the birds.”
My parents were so frightened that I didn’t get punished but the public humiliation was enough. Of course Dad had to find a way to use this latest excapade in his sermon and I had to throw away the once white and beautiful
I don’t know what was worse…my beautiful dress being ruined or being the poster child for recklessness in the neighborhood.