When I was a little girl, I had my own room. I don’t remember much about it except that my sister Sandy used to visit me and play. My roll-a-way had a handle that we pretended was the steering wheel on our pirate ship. Because we frequently got together to play in my room, our parents decided that we must want to share a room.
So, Kathy, my oldest sister, was given my room as her own. Sandy and I were then put together in what had been Kathy and Sandy’s room.
Our room became a special place to me not because of the furniture or the decorating but because it represented my safe haven, my port in a storm. As I grew older, I often took refuge in my room. There was a large bulletin board and I would spend hours tearing pictures out of magazines and making collages. They might be about the seasons, or favorite activities or just about anything. I would change the board every month. I enjoyed this creative outlet.
When I was twelve years old, I learned to play the baritone ukulele and then the guitar. When I needed to be alone or to recover from the day, I would escape to my room, play guitar and sing along. In no time, my troubles would feel lighter. I valued this time in my room.
My Uncle Lloyd, who we’ve talked about often, also expressed his love by building things for my sister’s and my room. He built us a corner desk so that we’d have our own quiet place to study. Next, he built a vanity that hung on the wall so we could have a place to fix our hair and put on makeup. I enjoyed using these gifts because they were an expression of Uncle Lloyd’s feelings for us.
I remember when I was in the eighth grade, I spent hours in my room teaching myself to put on eyeliner and mascara. I was pleased with the results and have used these two items in my daily routine ever since.
Reading Trixie Belden books was another favorite pastime of mine. My favorite place to read was in my room. I could forget about my sister’s illness and the problems of the day and simply be me.
I also spent time daydreaming in my room. I would put on Johnny Mathis records and lay on my bed with my eyes closed and dream about how my life would be when I grew up. My room was my refuge, my learning place and my dreaming place. In my childhood room, I learned to be alone with my hopes and dreams.