Plastic or Metal

Christianity Oasis has provided you with this inspirational writing titled Plastic or Metal from our Sojourn With Luz Leigh collection. We hope these short stories bring you understanding and peace within.

Plastic or Metal

Welcome to Christianity Oasis. This is Plastic or Metal from our Sojourn With Luz Leigh Collection. We hope you enjoy this enlightening reading and it helps you on your own be-YOU-tiful Christian walk.

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Sojourn With Luz Leigh

Plastic or Metal

Written by Luz Leigh - 27 July 2008

She always told everyone that she was treated as second class in the family. Not wanting to believe that, I always chided her for saying such a thing. How could we not treat her equally? After all she was special. The only daughter, the baby, the one born on her daddy's birthday.

But she kept insisting. To build her case she reminded us that while her older brothers got the expensive metal John Deere toys, she got the no-name PLASTIC farm toys from the five and dime store. If she was really good, the brothers might let her play with their JD stuff; but not all the time.

She wore her brother's hand-me-down clothes for years. When looking at pictures of her in the family albums, it was hard to tell if that was her, or was that her brother? Same clothes he wore a few months earlier.

Oh, here is a darling picture of her when she was about five years old. Dressed like daddy's little cowgirl. Wait, upon closer inspection I see that the chaps had been worn by her brother ... and the western straw hat? That belonged to him also. Well at least she was not wearing his western boots; you see, she was barefoot.

But, the picture that broke my heart was the one of her on her fourth birthday. She was seated at a little table separate from the rest of the family. How could I have been so cruel? Thirty-five years have passed and she has not forgotten that day, nor the table. I sat looking at my precious little girl, ostracized from the rest of the family. And I wept.

She lives about forty miles from me now, but I wanted to hop in the car and drive to her home so I could throw my arms around her and tell her how sorry I was for treating her like that. Instead I had to settle for a phone call to her. When she answered the phone, she could tell I was crying. Alarmed, she said, "Mom, what is wrong?" Well, the words came tumbling out. After I had babbled on for a while, she laughed and said, "Mom, y'all didn't make me sit at the little table. Don't you remember? Daddy had bought that little table and two chairs at Candy's gift shop for my birthday. I WANTED to sit at it instead of sitting at my usual place. And further more, remember, I did not want to share my table and chairs with anyone. Those were my special gift from Daddy."

After we had a good laugh about that, I mentioned how she always had to wear the secondhand clothes. She said she didn't mind; in fact she liked it because she had some little girl friends who did not have older brothers. They were jealous of her for getting to wear all those "neat" boy clothes. They all had to wear the girly-frilly stuff. She only had to wear dresses when we went to church each week or to Kindergarten class.

And as far as the plastic farm toys, she really didn't care. She reminded me that she was usually playing with her dolls, dishes and such. "Plowing" fields or "baling hay" was not as much fun to her as it was to her brothers.

And all these years when she would whine about being treated badly, I would feel so bad. Now I find out she was just doing that to get attention.

My precious daughter, do you know how happy I was to know we had not neglected you?

As we talked about her childhood, she shared something that happened when she was in Kindergarten class at our church school. Because of a decree from the pastor/principal of the school, the little girls could not wear pants to school. Dresses only. Among the little boys in her class was the preacher's kid, little Johnny, and we know that those are the worst kids in school. He was always reminding the other children of something they had done or said that he construed to be wrong and that he would be reporting them to his daddy.

Wouldn't you know it? My sweet little daughter, who has a double dose of sometimes stepping "out of the box," decided to agitate the young preacher's kid as only she knew how. Following a week's vacation with his family, the young boy arrived back at school only to be met with this declaration by my daughter: "Ha, ha. I wore pants to school every day while y'all were gone." Of course, little Johnny couldn't wait to report this infraction of the rules to his daddy. The next day the principal inquired of the teacher about this, who in turn had a talk with Jennifer. After a good tongue lashing from the teacher about lying and aggravating little Johnny, things got back to normal. Heather was surprised to learn from me that I had never heard of this incident until this week. Apparently the teacher had bigger fish to fry than to report something this trivial to me.

For those who know our family well, you can see Heather was only trying to follow in her big brothers' footsteps. Keeping up the family tradition, if you may.

Gotta love that girl. She reminds me so much of her daddy. (Now I would never have dreamed of doing something like agitating a classmate.) Do I see looks of astonishment on the faces of those who are reading this?

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