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TITLE: What Is In A Name?
By Jim Oates
04/24/08
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This story is a chapter in the biography on my wife's life.
What Is In A Name?

Wilma is an old English, Germanic name, which I believe, rightly suited her.
A few meanings are:

Desire to protect; Helmet of resolution; Resolute, hospitable and practical;
Rather austere temperament, with very conservative ideas. In addition, the one most suitable for this story is Fierce Protector.

She had an air of meekness about her; meekness is power under control. On the day in question, her meekness took a back seat and gave way to the Fierce Protector who over ruled.

We had a big back yard, big enough for a ball game or any other game that might be played. We also had a track for running or biking around. Consequently, many neighbour kids would end up at our place.

One day there was a lot more noise than usual, coming from the yard. There were threats flying back and forth. A scuffle began; Wilma went out to investigate and soon the Fierce Defender rose up inside of her. Her kids were being threatened.

Of course, kids are always having disagreements about something or other. Especially when those kids, the kids from up the road were on the scene. A pushing match started which turned into a scuffle. Just as it was about to turn into a knock’em down brawl, Wilma was now in the middle of it. She was grabbing arms and screaming threats, ordering those who did not belong, to go home and never come back.

Everyone was awestruck. Who is this crazy woman? It could not be Mom. It could not be the mild mannered Mrs. Oates. No one had ever seen this side of her before. She was entirely out of control and out of character. On hearing her voice, I rushed over to rescue the kids. Taking her by the shoulders and turned her around, I forcefully took her into the house. There was total silence on the play field; all eyes were on us as we disappeared into the house.

It took a while but I finally was able to calm her down. Taking her to the back door, she was able to see the same bunch of kids playing shouting and carrying on as if nothing had happened. Wilma felt ashamed of her behaviour and felt bad for a while, but like the kids, was soon her same jovial self.

We learned a valuable lesson that day. Kids are kids and they have disagreements, but they are still friends, and they are usually able to work out their differences. We learned to let them work out their own disagreements. Keep an eye on them, do not let them kill one another, and just let them work it out in their own way.

We have often looked back at this and many other events in our lives and realize that life goes on and things usually work themselves out. If we do the best we can, and live our lives as examples for our children and with a little nudge and sound advice from time to time, they usually were able to handle their own affairs pretty well.

Looking back, I think we did a pretty good job of it.
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