April 11, 1944
Before I hit on the unpleasant aspects of this missive, I shall get off with the good news, namely: I received two letters from you today, those of April 4 and 5, one of which dealed with my returning to work. Adele and I had our pictures made at Clair Pruett as per my promise. The total of my bill (for four pictures, two 8X10 and two 5x7 all in color) will be $17.40. Adele and I posed separately, and they will probably be bust length. We were only entitled to two proofs each, but he made three of Adele. He did this cause I asked for one serious pose of Adele and he thought I might not like it. He made two smiling and one serious. I'm smiling on both. Frankly, I think the price outrageous and had it not been for your constant pleas I should not have had them made. I had originally planned to pose with Adele. Since we could only have two proofs and couple pictures rarely flatter both I thought the single poses the best, I hope this will be to you liking, sweet, and that you will be pleased with my selections, for I cannot forward the proofs. Adele wore the little blue dress Sarah gave her as a birthday gift and I wore my suit and the white blouse Ruth gave me. I walked up and back, using the walker. I wore my new high heels for the first time and Phil, though I walked 18 blocks (back and forth) I felt as if I was wearing bedroom slippers. They are the most comfortable pair of high heeled shoes I have ever possessed and I didn't mind the high heels at all. Hereafter I shall endeavor to buy good shoes or I don't want any at all. I didn't like the way my hair looked (it never looks right when I want it to) and Adele kept me from giving myself further attention. She was quite troublesome at the studio and I sweated plenty before I got her to let me comb her hair, quiet her down, etc. The proofs will be ready on the 15th, so keep your her fingers crossed.
Phil, I don't think I have to tell you how much I love you or how much it means to me to adhere to your wishes. However, I will not be swayed against my intention to return to work. I've also thought about it for a long, long time and after much thought and discussion and talk I do not feel that I am injuring anyone’s health or well-being, let alone my own. I'll grant you that your arguments against are stiff, yet, I am looking at it in the same way we looked at the arguments for and against my going to Columbus with you. It, too, is not a necessity (Thank God) but one that will satisfy my desire for accomplishment. As for my health, I shall then be able to afford those vitamin pills in quantity and give myself every attention I need to make a nice appearance. There is no need for me to repeat the arguments for it, you know them full well. Where did you get the idea that I got sick working the first time back in ’41? I didn't get sick working, I got sick worrying about you and our finances. I’m not the type to get sick working, that is not in working too strenuously. A job sitting in an office all day will afford me a much needed rest and will free me of all financial worries and give us a future such as we have hoped and planned for. I say free me, cause I have had to bear the brunt of finances more so than you. I know too well the expenses entailed in having and raising a child and they are extremely high. A good income at this time would solve many problems of today, tomorrow and the future. As for the house, we could get a girl part-time, perhaps one day a week would be more than sufficient, and when Goldie gets on her feet after having the baby she too can chip in. I would only work five days a week and that would give me Saturday to do whatever I choosed to do in the house and Sunday for relaxation.
Phil, you say you are taking a selfish attitude by asking me to remain in the house for your "peace of mind". Would you stay in camp indefinitely for my peace of mind? No! You, too, seek relief from the consistency of routine and the monotony. Not that Adele is in any way monotonous, but being with her so constantly without an entire day off is just as trying as your Army routine. We both know we wouldn't mind it if we were together, regardless of any routine, but I, just as you, do need a break once in a while. I don't think you are selfish about the being home, that's only a natural instinct where loved ones are concerned. Sweet, there are times when I heartily wish that you would remember that I am still a young girl that can stale from frequent sacrifice. I can't help feeling old at times, A job will give me a new outlook for a time and help my morale, which has an inclination to teeter of late. I'm thinking about myself a great deal of late and mean to give myself some thought and attention, as you may have noted.
I won't have to dodge automobiles, etc. for I told you that the boss drives my dad to and from work. I could accompany them in the morning, but I doubt if I'd wait for them in the evening. I'm not going to work of necessity and therefore, can be independent. If I wish to take a day off or even a week I'm sure I could arrange
it. I intend to explain the whole situation to the boss and get him to see things my way. Perhaps I can even work less days a week if the salary is sufficient. I'm sure he'll understand my predicament and give me a break.
Please, baby, don't be mad at me for disagreeing with you. Phil, do you think I'd be so foolish as to disregard my health after suffering so hard and so long? Do you think my mother would suggest caring for Adele if it were not my health that interested her most?
Do you think so little of me as to think I would't do right by all if I did return to work? My mother has no desire to go against your wishes, as you well know. She thought the break would do me good. She is not influencing me nor has she ever influenced me. In fact she didn't care to offer her services up to now knowing full well that she would be working harder than I. We both think the change will do Adele lots of good also. Adele has reached the point where she simply refuses all food and I literally stand on my head to get her to take enough to keep her properly nourished. However, she'll eat anything my mother or Sarah will feed her. Kids go through screwy stages and this is one of them. She wants everything she can't have to eat. Furthermore, she does not require the exacting care of a few months ago. After all, honey, I don't expect to work for more than a few months for I'm hoping you'll be home next year this time. Phil, things must be right and good for us when you do or else I'll be heartbroken. If we must be separated then why not use that time to our advantage so that we may enjoy life more fully once you return?
Both Moms are with me and why shouldn't they be? After all, if we benefit they will too. My grandmother hasn't moved yet, but expects to shortly. I thought she would move earlier, but she hasn't been well and put it off again. Please, dearest, respect my views in the matter and rest assured that I respect yours and shall abide by them to the best of my ability.
Adele does something new - you ask her a question and she nods either "no" or "yes" in reply. Sometimes she says "yes" or "no". She knows how to hug and gives a great big one. You know how you say "uh" when you squeeze someone real hard, well, she says that at the same time. She likes to drink from her glass alone and tries to chase me away. However, she does spill it all over herself at times and I must watch at close range. Her sleeping habits have improved somewhat and I'd deeply appreciate it if they would improve still further. I'm sure they will once she has cut all her teeth. In the meantime it's murder. I've been staying up too late for the past couple of weeks and now that I am making it my business to get to bed earlier I don't mind her interruptions as much. She's averaging two interruptions per night and that's not so bad. About three of clock the other night she got up in the middle of the crib and yelled "momma" at the top of her lungs, She had to make a "sis". She puts her dolly in that little broken down carriage Ruth gave her and pushes it all over the place. Natalie said Adele can have her doll carriage, which is quite a large one. Adele shakes her hands with the forefingers pointed (like the jitterbugs do) when dancing. She points her finger, shakes her head and says "no, no, no!”
"Our" date at 5 P. M. is always kept, but I'm doing various things at that hour now. I try not to feed Adele til 5:30 hoping that the later feeding will hold her til later the next morning. If I'm out with her I bring her in at 5 P. M. and am busy undressing her. Sometimes I'm busy preparing her dinner. Whatever I'm doing, sweet, you can be sure I'm very close at that time. In fact I've got my arms about you and am kissing you (mentally) if you really want to know what I'm thinking about at that time. I'll close now with all my love (while I'm in your arms) for I know of no better place to call heaven.
11 April 1944
No mail at all today—not even a V-mail! I'm missing quite a few of your March letters, Chippie; hope they come through soon.
Managed to write two more letters today—one to Brother Jack and the other to Eddie. Tomorrow I mean to write to Mom and Ann Furr.
Was busy with the officers’ pay vouchers for the morning. In the afternoon I wrote the two letters.
This evening, after supper, I strolled over to the Red Cross to sit around for a while, read the papers, and listen to the records. A fellow I know, “Oiving” (I call him that ’cause it burns him up), introduced me to a newcomer on the base, a Leo Silverman—of Brooklyn and Atlantic City. We gabbed a while about Brighton and Coney Island—then he had to report for K.P. Oiving asked if I would care to indulge in some checkers. I had finished with the papers, so I agreed. We played about an hour, during which time I managed to win five of the six games. Feeling myself in need of a “soda,” I hiked back to the barracks, and had the “soda,” and looked in at the Day-Room. Two card games were going full blast. One was for the small stakes we play for around here (6d-1s—or 10¢ and 20¢)—the other was 5s (one-buck) limit. When one of the fellows in the cheaper game dropped out, I took his place. After an hour or so of “ups-and-downs,” I called it a day (not mine)—I only won about 90¢. My former luck with the cards is very conspicuous by its absence these days.
That, my Sweet, was how I spent the day—and many many more like it.
Since there's nothing else to say (that I can think of at the moment),—you've “had” it, Chippie. My dearest love to you, today and always, my darling. A great big hug for Adele Bara, and my love to all.