“I’ve got the ‘don’t-cares’ today.”
As a child, I was never quite sure what my mother meant when she said that, but later in life, I figured it out. Actually, it didn’t take much figuring. I experienced the “don’t-cares” myself.
Although it seems counterintuitive, the “don’t-cares” is not a particularly happy state of mind. Even as a child, I knew that one must feel a sense of accomplishment to be in high spirits. But I wasn't about to look a gift horse in the mouth – understand it or not – I liked it.
When my mother announced she had the “don’t cares,” I’d giggle and say to myself, Oh, goodie! No work today!
She’d lounge around reading, drinking coffee and doing as she pleased until time to cook dinner. She loved cooking and always cooked, no matter what. Unfortunately, she didn’t pass that love on to me. Everyone knows I’d rather be featured on My Strange Addiction than cook a meal.
When she had one of those days, I’d lie across my bed and talk to my friend, Carol, on the phone. If the weather was nice, we’d meet halfway and take one of the long walks we so enjoyed.
Those were the best days of all.
Nowadays, when I wake up with the “don’t cares,” I smile and remember my mother – the best of her: her smile, her contagious laughter, the way she sang as she did her housework and her sometimes humorous efforts to teach me right from wrong.
And I recall the fun things Carol and I did growing up on the same street in a small town: the walks, the giggles, breaking the rules by riding our bicycles farther than we were allowed, the carnival, double-feature movies on Saturday afternoons. And so much more!
Beautiful memories are the glue that holds life together – even if they are sometimes inspired by the “don’t cares.”