This photo and sentiment posted on social media from Midwives of the Soul by my friend Dorin has so touched me that I am unable to do it justice with words.

My grandmother once gave me a tip:
In difficult times, you move forward in small steps.
Do what you have to do, but little by little.
Don’t think about the future, or what may happen tomorrow.
Wash the dishes.
Remove the dust.
Write a letter.
Make a soup.
You see?
You are advancing step by step.
Take a step and stop.
Rest a little.
Praise yourself.
Take another step.
Then another.
You won’t notice, but your steps will grow more and more.
And the time will come when you can think about the future without crying.

– Elena Mikhalkova

(Image of Tasha Tudor, American Illustrator 1915-2008)

Leave it that the women who loved me and I loved in my early life lived and prevailed in Hard Times. The photo could be my grandmother except there was never money for the elegant attire.  She endured Texas Reconstruction then Pioneer and later Dust Bowl Oklahoma and died in the midst of her second World War.  “moving the dust around” was not a metaphor in for her in my childhood as I recall sweeping the front yard barren of vegetation.  Included in the tribute to Mothers section I profile her daughter, my mother.

My other grandmother born into comfortable middle class  Indiana by  suffered in her early adulthood  matter of 3 tears the loss to tuberculosis all 3 of her older sisters.  The family uprooted to escape more deaths from disease immigrated to the lottery land of Oklahoma. As a college valedictorian from the promise of academia she became a pioneer mother to also prevail through the  Dust Bowl, the the flu pandemics, and two world wars. She died just as the good times that I have lived were beginning.

I add all my aunts and older cousins. One, great aunt who sued  WW  I  as a US Army Nurse on the battlefields and the hard times that followed is   profiled as one of our Pathfinders.

Hard Times. What is a Woman to do?