Bed in summer by Robert Louis Stevenson
"In winter I get up at night
And dress by yellow candle-light.
In summer quite the other way,
I have to go to bed by day.
I have to go to bed and see
The birds still hopping on the tree,
Or hear the grown-up people's feet
Still going past me in the street.
And does it not seem hard to you,
When all the sky is clear and blue,
And I should like so much to play,
To have to go to bed by day?"
I was born during the time of the polio outbreak in our town. I was having trouble walking and was taken to the doctor. They found out that I had polio. They didn't have the knowledge that they have today and immobilized patients putting braces and splints on limbs that were affected.This was way before the vaccine. My Grandma had heard of the Sister Kenny way of treating polio and she and Mom treated me themselves with hot packs and a form of physical therapy. They weren't trained in any way, but my Grandma thought that it didn't make sense to put someone in a brace...she felt that exercise was the way to go. I guess I can thank my Grandma for the way I am today.
Later on I was really under the watchful eyes of my Mom and Dad. I had to keep my legs warm (snow pants) in the winter. Sturdy high top shoes, naps and an early bedtime. I can remember being in my room and hearing my friend Mary and her Mom outside rollerskating. I peaked under the shade and watched...wishing that I could be out there.
This was the time that I really enjoyed reading and still do. One of my favorite authors was Robt. Louis Stevenson. Grandma bought me the book, A Child's Garden of Verses, and I was introduced to poetry. i think that the many hours of "resting" were responsible for my love of poetry today. The little book was given to the cousins I'm sure, as were all of my toys....but I bought a copy for my little ones at a book fair. I have it still. The above poem is one of my favorites.I tells my story so sweetly.