Secrets? Hmmmmm, got ya goin’ don’t I? Let’s see now, secrets. Oh yes. Well, everyone has to have some secrets, ya know? And just because I am a mountain woman, does not mean I am any different than the rest. Some secrets we take to the grave. Some we share only with our Friends and Sisters. Some even with our Mothers. There are those only between us and our God. Finally there are the secrets between us and the Devil…… those are the ones that we really did know we were doing wrong and went ahead anyway.
Women have secrets about their age, their weight, their jean size and their hair color. Some even keep these types of secrets from their closest friends. No big deal, little white lies, white secrets, no one gets hurt. Dumb if you ask me. Who cares? I cannot imagine having a friend that I could not trust with this type of secret, I would not even want to hide such a silly thing from her. A true friend can be trusted with all of your secrets. Now, I would not go and wear a t shirt or anything stating, “Hi I am Ireney and my current weight is __________”, oops, sorry that is a secret! No sir, more important secrets than that kind.
We share secrets about our feelings, hopes and dreams with our friends, sisters, maybe if we are lucky enough, our husbands.
We hide secrets about how much our telephone bill is, how much we spent on clothes, or that new Mary Kay makeup that makes our skin look so good. Usually this information is kept from our husbands. It is just too bad we could not keep this info a secret from our bank also. Darn those overdraft fees.
I believe you are pardoned for not sharing your underwear size, especially if it goes up past the two digit mark, man alive, don’t tell anybody! Sacred stuff, that there. Be sure and cut out all of the size tags just in case you get in a wreck. That is something your Mama forgot to tell you.
Recipes are something that can be kept secret, even an old family secret. I mean look at Colonel Sanders, his recipe is still a secret and he got rich from it! I probably would share my fried chicken secret with friends and family, no problem, am honored to be asked.
There are definitely the secrets you keep from your Mother and with good reason. Number 1 reason, you do not want to go to hell for breaking your Mama’s heart when she finds out you were in the back seat at the drive in movie with Billy Boy. No, no, don’t go breaking your Mama’s heart.
Now your Father is another one altogether. You would keep the above secret from him also, but for the protection of yourself and Billy Boy. You would hate for Billy Boy to wake up to your Daddy’s shotgun in his face. Ugly way to wake up in the morning.
Speaking of ugly, I would keep a secret if I had plastic surgery, not that I would. Again, I would not shout it from the mountain tops. “Hey, everyone! I got a nose job, come see !” Nah, don’t think so. Now a boob job might be kinda nice to show off.
Your income is kept a secret, at least from the I.R.S. The last thing you would want is the Tax Man coming after you.
A Mountain Woman will not usually keep a pregnancy a secret. I suppose there are some that have had a baby out of wedlock, or by someone other than their husband that has kept it a secret, but usually not. Not this woman. On our mountain it is usually a time for great rejoicing. A new baby is considered a gift from Heaven.
When I was first pregnant with J.W., John-Wayne and I had been living in sin for a few years. We were going to get around to getting married, but you know, it was the 70’s and all and shacking up was cool. I would not do that part of my life over in the same way if I could. I believe in the holiness of marriage. We were dumb though in those days. Secretly I really wanted to be married all along, but didn’t want John-Wayne to think that I had “trapped him”, so did not push it. I was waiting for him to get down on one knee and ask me.
We did keep the pregnancy a secret from the Dukes’ family for about 4 months. John-Wayne decided to wait until Polly was in the hospital recovering from the “woman’s surgery” to tell her. He had a lot of class. He did not mean any harm, but his mother was so sick from infection, I think he was afraid she was going to die without knowing he was going to be a father. We were visiting Polly in the hospital where she looked like death warmed over, if there could be such a thing. John-Wayne announces the baby . Polly just looked at us and said weekly, “Are you going to get married?”.
I don’t remember what John-Wayne answered, but we did get married. A few years later. We finally sent j.w. over to Polly’s house and called the Justice of the Peace in. We got married in our living room, no frills. Well at least J.W. was legal. Years later he jokingly said, “I was a bastard”. For crying out loud. At least it was not in the days where it was a scandal.
When Salli-O came along, we had been married for years. She was quite a surprise as we were a little older than most folks having their 2nd child. She was a gift from heave. We were pretty excited. J.W. just said, “If it is a boy, don’t name it nothing dumb”. We said we would not name it nothing dumb.
So, secrets………………., nothing so bad, nothing so scandalous, just a semi- secret pregnancy, and secret underwear size. Nothing too big up here on my mountain. Funny thing is, I realized later that J.W. should never have been kept a secret at first either, as both of my babies were truly a gift from above.