So much depended upon my dying mother, her love for me, and perfect understanding.

I sat on the middle stair just to be “out of the way” as my grandmother went up and down them. From here, I saw her collapse into my grandfather’s arms, sobbing, “Oh, David, the doctor says we may lose our daughter!”

Well, their daughter was my mother and this eight-year-old child flew into the bedroom door, kicking and screaming, ready to bring down the house.

Mother, meanwhile, begged the doctor to put the dead baby out of sight, cover her over, and tidy the room, making it fit to let me in.

“Oh, mother!” I fell on my knees, hugging her from the floor.

“Darling baby,” she said. “Will you help the doctor to help me get well?”

“Oh, yes!”

“Then, you must go quickly, be very quiet and do what Granny tells you. You must hurry so the doctor can work.”

“I will—I will!”

After that, there wasn’t a sound to be heard, as a child was quiet, a baby was gone, and a mother lived to bring up the one she already had.

by Grace