By Gaye Gannon
Even though I was the youngest of seven children I ended up being raised like an only child in a one-parent situation by my quite elderly father. Would I change that-------never. I feel I had the best of both worlds-my father all to myself, which changed the dynamics of all the previous father/child relationships within our house dramatically, and also all the hilarious stories now recounted on family occasions that are only vague memories to me.
We can all relate to being bet out of bed because “The cattle are in the vegetable garden again, stacking turf in Red Pat’s turf house and bringing the cattle home from the field behind Sweeneys. I, though, never had the privilege/torture of having to milk a cow or feed geese or chickens like the older ones. I remember hearing one sister at a family gathering, admittedly after a glass or five of ‘lemon sherbet’ state emphatically to another “Sure you made me milk your cow while you did my homework. Is it any wonder I thought I was thick”.
Having watched my own two grow up and hearing the “I’ll die if I can’t play Play Station” statement on more than one occasion, I often wonder what they would have made of my childhood, isolated, no ‘mod cons’ and elevated to the role of housekeeper at the age of nine when Mammy died. Did it annoy me?......Yes. Would I change it?.....not in a million years.