The Surprise of Her Life (Pt. 1)

"It had been a rough couple of years for the woman who owned the salon down the way."

The Surprise of Her Life (Pt. 1)

In the Beginning

It had been a rough couple of years for the woman who owned the salon down the way. Opening a business in a small town is a struggle in the best of times, but in Small Town, Texas, it was even more difficult. A small, sleepy farm town with only a couple of narrow roads and two stop signs was hardly fit for a prosperous beginning. But, she was determined to grow this business. The salon business, the business she studied hard for and made excellent grades in. Why, now that her husband was back from the war, he wasn't well and she was going to have to tow the load. He was no longer able to work full time to support their little family. He had nightmares every night, horrible scenes from the war, reliving the blood and gore in his head. It was enough to cripple any man. Yes, she would have to do most of the work in an effort to support them all and there was just no way God set her up to fail.

She'd only been open for business a few months, yet she already had a full staff of operators, ready and willing to cut, curl, or perm the hairs of the ladies of Small Town. 1957 might be a good year after all.

She had met her husband on a blind date some years ago. His sister had gone to beauty school with her and she introduced the two. The date? Nothing really fancy. He thought if he could buy her a Coca Cola and they had some fine conversation and a few laughs, it would be a nickel well spent. If not, well then, it was only a nickel. He could get more where that came from. As luck would have it, all went well and she didn't get home until well after midnight. Quite unheard of in that day and age. They had a whirlwind romance and married only six months after they met. He went off to World War II and she was right by his side. Oh, the life they would have together. She was not prone to dream lofty "happily ever after" dreams, but she couldn't help herself this time. Well, a girl could hope. That and dreaming were free, after all.

Soon, while D. was in the Navy, their first little girl was born. She was busy and certainly not lonely living on the base and all. Playdates and play groups were virtually unheard of in that day and age. It was coffee or lunch, thank you very much. Times were so simple then.

Her thoughts were jarred back to the salon, her dream. She looked around, inspecting her surroundings. A new coat of pink paint disguised the nicks and bruises of what lay underneath. The wrought iron archway lead the way from the waiting room to the salon proper. Dryer chairs dotted the floor plan, while black chairs matched the onyx shampoo bowls in the back, lying in between the two stood the styling chairs. The walls had a few set decorations, sporting a clock and the operator licenses nailed on the wall with photos of their smiling faces.

By now, she had two daughters, 10 years apart. Just the other day, she found out she was expecting again. She was most upset as this was not the time to be pregnant. Not at all. But, here she was, every bit of three months and the rabbit had died. She grimaced thinking about it and then turned her thoughts to tidying up the shop; picking up towels and sweeping the floor. She had to stop thinking of the impending chain of events. If she could just keep her mind on other things…

The months flew by as she kept herself busy at the salon and at the house with the two girls. It had been six years since she'd given birth the last time. This time, she was almost 40, her blood pressure hadn't been what it should have been. It was too high and the doctor's were concerned.

It had been rough. She was tired, as big around as a barn or at least it felt that way and the extra weight was dragging her down. She sometimes wondered if she would be pregnant until the end of time, then she would sadly smile to herself, knowing it couldn't be true. It was October now. Any day, this baby would come and she had to be ready for it.

"Oh, my soul," she pondered, "What will this new life bring?"

fact or fiction
Paula Walker Baker
Paula Walker Baker
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Paula Walker Baker

I am an author of three books: The Conservative Congregant, And Time Stood Still and Jack Learns to Grill ( a children's story). I also work for Hallmark Cards and love every minute of it! Living on a farm, we have 9 donkeys and 2 horses.

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