The first order of business following this ceremony was to finish school. Well perhaps that was just one of the first things that had to be done. Jo Ann had no idea how to be a wife, she did not know how to cook or in fact how to deal with the responsibility she had assumed. Some good things did happen, though. She and Jep were able to get a small apartment over a storefront so they had a place of their own. And her new mother-in-law was very kind and patient and more than willing to teach Jo the homemaking skills she lacked.
Some other things did not work out so well, though. Jep was studying to be a mechanical draftsman, thinking to obtain employment at the car shops. The railroad had forever maintained that facility in town; but just as the young husband was almost ready to step into what he envisioned as a life-long career in his hometown, the shops were closed forever and hundreds of people were thrown out of work.
It was the fall of 1955, and the first of the young couple’s children was born, a beautiful little girl. They cleverly combined Daddy’s middle name with Mama’s middle name and called her Bobbie Jo.
Jep was offered a job in a dry-cleaning establishment in a nearby university town. They made the move, and a few months later their first son was born. Their third child, a girl, was born in 1958. Juggling three tiny children, keeping house and trying to envision herself as a person in her own right more than a wife and child-bearer, Jo Ann found a good bit of frustration. The money was never enough and the routine was stifling. Marriage, she thought, certainly has put my problems behind me. See, there they are in a procession following along as I drag this stupid little red wagon to the grocery store. We don’t even have a car and no prospects of getting one. But children. That’s quite another thing. We get plenty of them; I’m pregnant again.
© 2008 David W. Lacy
This concludes the "Little Jo" series to be presented on this blogsite.
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