After back surgery last October my father had major complications from which we all feared he wouldn’t recover. He was delirious and in pain much of the time with hallucinations, fever, and severe weakness. During this time I was over for a visit. He had overheard Mom and I talking about various sewing projects and he began to smile a little and say in a very weak voice, “I made an apron one time.” Mom and I looked at each other quizzically. He caught our thoughts and said, “No, really, a friend of mine talked me into doing if for a 4-H project in second or third grade.” He went into great detail in his description, and we had no idea whether this was true or something his mind had fabricated due to medication and his illness. He continued his story. “Our mom’s helped us make the aprons and I remember mine was trimmed with ric-rack and had a flower on the pocket. We won at our local school because obviously there were no other boys in the competition. After winning we had to go to the southeastern conference. There were so many people there. We saw school buses from everywhere all filled with students as we arrived. We didn’t find out until we got there that we had to model our aprons for the whole conference. Neither one of us wanted to do it, but we couldn’t figure out how to get out of it. We just walked out on the stage, and you’ve never heard the likes of the whistling and carrying on. I don’t know how my friend felt, but that was the longest day of my life. Everywhere we went people would point and whistle. I was never so happy as when we left and head for home.” Daddy drifted off to sleep and Mom and I speculated again on whether or not the story was true. Mom began to vaguely remember my grandmother giving her an apron in their early days of marriage (they have been married over 50 years) that she said my dad had made when he was a kid.
Daddy was sick for a long time, but Christmas Day he began to pull out of it. He is now fully recovered and back to his old self. We have confirmed that his story was in fact true, and he added that up until that time he had never told anyone that story. He still seems a little embarrassed when we mention it. Mom dug through some old linens and found the apron. It is in pretty rough shape, but you can tell at one time it was really pretty. The pocket was crocheted, so of course I asked Daddy if he had made the pocket as well as the apron. “No,” he answered, “and to be truthful I am sure my mom did a lot of the sewing while showing me how.”
When I told him I wanted to share this story he told me to change the names. So those who know me personally you might not want to mention to my dad that you read this.