and soon I’m two and seventy

I had a very sweet Happy Birthday message today on my Columbia High Class of 1964 message board from one of my boyfriends who I noticed had sent me birthday greetings for the past 3 years on this website which I never check. Thanks so much to Tim for remembering me. I immediately went to Facebook and added him as a friend so that I can send him birthday greetings on whatever day his might be. I confess I have been remiss in wishing others a Happy Birthday unless I am prompted to do so by the Big Brother of Facebook who is forever watching over me.

I am struck by how soon my 72nd. birthday will be…April 21, one week from today. Sweet Lady Gaga, as The Red Man famously said, how did this happen. My first birthday card came from my personal Medicine Man Dr. Martin and his entire staff. These are the people who see me most frequently, and I appreciated the Life is Meant to Live and be Celebrated sentiments. I figure if they’re hopeful for my future, I should be, too.

I’ve received not one, but two, birthday cards from former President Jimmy Carter and the Carter Center, both of which were quite lovely and one signed by the President himself. Why two, you might ask, as I did. And then, of course, my bank ATM machines have been unusually prompt on good wishes whenever I’ve made withdrawals in April which I assume has something to do with their corporate guilt for the outrageous service charges they favor me with every month.

The message board for the 1964 Columbia High School graduating class in West Columbia, Texas took me back 54 years to that senior year when I was about to graduate from high school and leave my little town of Brazoria, Texas that was 15 miles from the Gulf Coast for summer school at the University of Texas in Austin 90 miles away. Big changes were on the way for me, but take a look at the images of my senior year when I was voted by my 90+ person class as the Best All Round favorite, or as my dad invariably teased me by saying, she was the best all the way around.

Return with me to those thrilling days of yesteryear when my mother was always so happy for me to be dating a boy.

Note particularly the hands and feet

(Poor photographer – he must have spent hours on that pose)

(our mascot was the Roughneck)

I am the one on the far left with fist pumped

Senior prom

my mother rolled my hair until I left for college

Senior Follies – and they were

I sang an unremarkable rendition of the St. Louis Blues

my lifelong love of tennis began here…

…and basketball, too

and of course, the political

The photos today are courtesy of me with my cell phone and my yearbook so quality leaves much to be desired, but you get the general idea of this 18-year-old baby dyke trying her best to be straight but  unknowingly about to add complexity to her sexual awareness through life in a women’s dormitory at the state’s largest university where the population of the dorm was greater than the population of the town where she grew up. Talk about trouble.

Stay tuned.








About Sheila Morris

Sheila Morris is a personal historian, essayist with humorist tendencies, lesbian activist, truth seeker and speaker in the tradition of other female Texas storytellers including her paternal grandmother. In December, 2017, the University of South Carolina Press published her collection of first-person accounts of a few of the people primarily responsible for the development of LGBTQ organizations in South Carolina. Southern Perspectives on the Queer Movement: Committed to Home will resonate with everyone interested in LGBTQ history in the South during the tumultuous times from the AIDS pandemic to marriage equality. She has published five nonfiction books including two memoirs, an essay compilation and two collections of her favorite blogs from I'll Call It Like I See It. Her first book, Deep in the Heart: A Memoir of Love and Longing received a Golden Crown Literary Society Award in 2008. Her writings have been included in various anthologies - most recently the 2017 Saints and Sinners Literary Magazine. Her latest book, Four Ticket Ride, was released in January, 2019. She is a displaced Texan living in South Carolina with her wife Teresa Williams and their dogs Spike, Charly and Carl. She is also Naynay to her two granddaughters Ella and Molly James who light up her life for real. Born in rural Grimes County, Texas in 1946 her Texas roots still run wide and deep.
This entry was posted in Humor, Lesbian Literary, Life, Personal, Reflections, Slice of Life, sports, The Way Life Is and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to and soon I’m two and seventy

  1. reocochran says:

    Dear Sheila,
    Happy birthday to you, dear 72 year old, happy birthday to you!! 🎼🎶 📣
    Hope you have a remarkable day and year. . . Keep on going into many, many years to come!

    I like that fist in the air! My Mom (turns 90 in November) marched for Civil Rights; after she had stood up in parades shouting Equality for Women was important. It was easy in the 70’s to know where I stood and feel strongly that legacy of President Jimmy Carter will be something awesome in his Peace making, Acceptance and World wide Compassion demonstrated when he could have rested on his laurels but Didn’t!
    Hope you get avfew gifts and a delicious meal, maybe cake? ❤️ ✨ ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    • I would love to have a delicious birthday cake!
      President Carter continues to build a legacy of peace and compassion around the world. His stamina has been remarkable, but I remember when his mother Miss Lillian joined the Peace Corps in her 80s so he comes from good DNA. I admire him greatly.


    • Thank you so much, Robin, for catching up on my posts – you are a wonderful blogger, and I am privileged to have met you through cyberspace friendship!


      • reocochran says:

        I have always been fond of you, Pretty, the Casa and of course, Red. 🤗 I sit with a very nice friend, Karen, at work who has had a partner, Susie, for about 30 years. Their golden retriever is named, “Cooper.” Their cat is named, “Pauli Girl.” 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      • I like to think of you sitting with your friend Karen at work! She is lucky to have you supporting her!! Tell her I said hi from Pretty and the rest of us at Casa de Cardinal!!


      • reocochran says:

        She is hilarious and once was an EMT. We think she lived about 3 miles away from my Mom and Dad when I was a baby, she’s a year and a week younger than I am. Someday in the Fall I will post a photo of her with her hands up looking like she’s ready to punch me while she’s wearing Michigan State shirt and I have my OSU shirt on. I’m giggling since she has a snaggle toothed mouth (face) on. I ended up with tears coming down my face after we sat back down at our lunch table.
        I’ll tell her Hi from Pretty, you and the rest of those at Casa de Cardinal! 💞

        Liked by 1 person

      • reocochran says:

        I got a phone call and didn’t finish my thought. I relate so much more to the challenges and hurdles by knowing Karen this past ten years. She and I are close, being “Cleveland girls.” 😄
        I think you and I would be close friends, too.
        I’m truly proud of your recent university symposium, Sheila.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I feel especially close to a few of my blogging friends I’ve made during the last 8 years – including you! The years fly by…


      • reocochran says:

        Oh, my! Thank you sincerely!
        I have been blogging six years but didn’t really have a lot of followers until two years ago. It keeps my mind going while at the warehouse, at least.

        Liked by 1 person

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