Little Cottage by the Cornfield

Little Cottage by the Cornfield

A Story by Shelley Warner

Memories of my son and a sweet little home


Nineteen eighty two was a big year for us. My husband, Tom had graduated, from a school in Portland, Oregon, with a ministry degree. We had applied to adopt a baby from Calcutta, India and had been waiting and saving. Then in the first month of 1982, Anand (Andy) was born. A month later, he flew with an escort and met us at the Portland International Airport. We were still living in an upstairs apartment in the home of a woman who lived next to the campus where Tom had graduated.

Then we learned of a couple in Milwaukie, Oregon who rented cottages on their property. We moved in. There were three cottages and ours was next door to a corn field. We were allowed to pick any corn we wanted. Oh yeah, and apples from the trees too. I cooked sweet corn and made apple sauce. It was in that home that Andy first sat up. He sat in his little bath tub on the kitchen table and splashed in the water. He sat in his little bed by the couch and played with his toys, smiling happily. And when I carried him on my hip, through a path by the cornfield, to see the goats, he kicked his happy feet. Sometimes I sat in our yard, where hollyhocks grew in a planter that ran the length of our house, with Andy playing, while I crocheted him a blanket of deep blue, magenta, and gold.

We didn’t stay in the little house by the cornfield very long.  Tom was asked to pastor a church in Colton, Oregon and we moved to a bigger house by Highway 211 that bordered a campground. I carried Andy on my hip and stood on a walking bridge where a creek tumbled over and around some rocks. Andy pointed and said one of his first words, “wa wa”.

The years came and went and we lived in different places and worked in different churches.  Andy struggled with learning disabilities. He tried to fit in. He used drugs. He eventually got locked up. I don’t think people should go to prison for drugs; they should go to rehab. But that’s another story. He’ll be out in time for his fortieth birthday. He still has the colorful blanket I made sitting in our yard by the cornfield. He’s looking forward to seeing his children that I’m raising. He’s looking forward to a new life. There is always hope.  And when I think of cornfields, I remember his cute baby months living in the cottage by the cornfield

© 2021 Shelley Warner

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Our lives never turn out the way we envisioned when we were growing up. And, I agree with you…no prison for a person who uses drugs. They need help, not sitting behind bars. Hope. That’s one thing that can help even the person in the most precarious situation survive. You write with so much love for your son. It’s a lovely story full of memories. I hope things work out for him and I feel like with your love and guidance, he will find that path again.

Posted 4 Weeks Ago

a great story,true and some sad times ,but it is about real life

Posted 1 Month Ago

Shelley Warner

1 Month Ago

Thank you for reading it; I really appreciate the feedback.

1 Month Ago

you`re welcome
Perhaps "poignant" is the word. I related your happy, early days by the cornfield to some of my own and thought "What sweet, meaningful memories". Then came the unfortunate news about Andy, and my smile turned upside down. His behavior is known to me, having had nephews with the same affliction. (two of them dead now, the other a basket case) What can we do? All of our love, attention and guidance is sometimes not enough. Always, we must keep hope that things will turn around.

Posted 1 Month Ago

Shelley Warner

1 Month Ago

Thank you Samuel for your lovely comments. Yes, it's been a difficult journey.
Thank is so true Shelley there is always hope. Thank you for sharing your wonderful memories with us here. I think many can see a bit of themselves in them.

Posted 1 Month Ago

Shelley Warner

1 Month Ago

That's such a nice compliment Carlos that people can see a bit of themselves in my writings. Thank y.. read more

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4 Reviews
Added on July 26, 2021
Last Updated on July 26, 2021


Shelley Warner
Shelley Warner

Camas, WA

I like to write about my life. Sounds a little narcissistic, right? But it's the challenges, the griefs, the joys, the faith struggles, and the enjoyment of nature that inspires me. I have published t.. more..


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