One of my days off coincided with a visit from Maddie – home for a few days. Gran was in the States visiting Auntie Janet and Dad and Evan had gone to the match so Mum, Maddie and I had a lovely girly day.
After supper Mum said we would walk Maddie down to the aunts. Old habits die hard and she always stayed with the aunts. As we walked along the avenues and through the park Maddie started to talk about her marriage. It seemed that all was not well in Paradise, but Mum cut her off,
‘You’ve made your bed – you must lie on it!
This seemed a bit harsh to me but that was Mum for you. I suppose she was remembering all the protestations and declarations of eternal love both Maddie and Paul had made to persuade Mum and Dad to let them get married. I remembered what the soldier friend of Paul had said.
‘Now Paul’s married to a girl like Maddie he should buck his ideas up.’
However, all was well because I then got the news that Maddie was pregnant. So exciting – a baby in the family and I’d be an auntie. The next best thing to having my own. My favourite job on the wards was to be ‘baby nurse’ where two of you looked after up to six babies and did everything for them. Often at the 6pm feed when you and the baby were both pretty tired, I used to look at the helpless little creature nestled in my arms and long for the day when I could have my own. No way could that happen until I had taken Finals – three years away- to say nothing of finding a suitable father. In the fifties I don’t remember hearing about anyone having difficulty conceiving – more the problem of avoiding it. Now one hears so many sad stories of couples unable to have a baby.
MTL and I were still corresponding and he suggested that when I came down to visit the newcomer he should be available to show me around and go to a show or two. I was getting to know and like him more and more so that seemed a great idea. Roll on little stranger. Sarah and I went off to Scotland full of the joys of spring.