Remembering Mum’s Teddies and my return home…

Mum with three of her grandsons.

Something from Paul’s letter to the Ephesians: See then that you walk with thoughtfulness and care, not like a fool but wisely, making up for lost time, because the days are evil!

Ephesians 5:15 (Sandy’s understanding)

My parents set up home in Port Elizabeth. Dad got a job similar to the one he had in Zimbabwe and Mum opted not to work. She soon became board and heard a program from England about ‘Teddies for Tragedies”. She started by giving people in Port Elizabeth the opportunity to do the same. People could get the pattern and knit the little bear and send it to her. Within no time Mum’s life was full of things to do. Some people just liked to knit and she sewed them together, others did the whole Teddy all stuffed but with no face, Mum gave them a face . Others turned the same pattern into a work of art, Mum carefully made sure a level of ‘sameness’ went to a designated place.

Mum in the beginning did this through word of mouth.

Not using a phone, they had no phone.

She was invited to speak at schools and soon groups of students were knitting . When the children found out that there were problems with hunger. They brought an extra sandwich with their lunch which was collected and taken to the area of need. Orphanages, law courts where ever the news went out people would write to Mum and tell her how many Teddies they needed. She would most times visit and meet the people, wherever she heard of children needing comfort their was a unique gift of a knitted Teddy.

Mum also received thank you notes from people who said the knitting had helped them overcome their sadness , some even said their depression. Mum was never without anything to do.

It was interesting to see how much could be done without a phone in the house but it did make it difficult for Roy and me. During the time I was in Port Elizabeth I managed to use the public call box on the corner of the street with a pocket full of change and give Roy a neighbour’s phone number. We were able to talk briefly on a few occasions and during the last call Roy assured me that a new person had been taken on at work and that his work load would be reduced.

The trip home was fine. I was soon offered an early morning teaching class from 8:00 am to 9:00am . Roy’s work started at 9:30 am and now we both had outside interests .

Love and commitment have always been there for Roy and me but these without time are hollow. We had to make the time we had together work.

It’s surprising how much free time and productivity you gain when you lose the busyness in your mind.

Brittany Burgunder.

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