Our Stairway         


We brought our first home.  It was homey place, with a wide porch across the front of the

house and it had tall pillars by the front steps.  There were three large windows in the front,

on the left side, facing the large oak in the yard, and the windows at night glowed and

spelled welcome because of the table and lamp she kept there.  She, being my darling

Ellie, which is short for Eleanor May.  She is short in stature but powerful large in the

important things, like faith, love, compassion, fairness and loyalty.

She always told me and others, the thing that really sold the house to her was the beautiful

staircase and hand rails leading to the second floor.  They set plumb in the middle of the

house, as you entered, gently wrapped by the entrance hall and looking mighty inviting and a

little bit majestic by their beauty.

The hand rails were so shiny and glossy, that every day, when she came down to fix my 

breakfast, she would dust and shine them, by running her hand, covered with a sock, along

their glowing surface.

You could see the upper hall and upstairs from the foyer, splendid view, she always says,

and she means it.  She always gives a loving glance upwards, with a special smile, every

night when she goes up them, on her way to bed.  I always follow, feeling awe from the fact

that after all these years, she never tires of glancing and smiling.



I bounded up those beautiful steps two at a time, when I heard the first wail from Baby Bea,

short for Beatrice.  Mrs. Murphy, the mid-wife, a cantankerous woman to say the least, had

said “No, you cannot be in the room, so now down to the living room with you.”  I went but I

wasn’t happy.  I wanted to share the pain and joy with my wife.  Eventually those steps led to

my darling and our little Bea.


  Baby Bea, much to our dismay, took her first fun glide down the glossy, shiny banister. It

really scared us, as we heard her squeal of delight, and stood at the bottom, as she flew

down, and with a bump on her rump, landed at our feet and said, “That was fun.”  After

careful instructions about the dangers of her endeavor, we looked at each other and smiled.

 I think we then began to understand the significant part these lovely stairs held for us and

our daily lives.


Bea literally glided down those same steps, dressed for her first date.  She was a vision of

loveliness and with her gangly, but never the less, charming prince of a young man at our

side, we watched as he pinned her first corsage on her first formal dress, ready in all her

beauty, to attend her first dance.  When we saw her at the top of the stairs, we suddenly

realized her baby days were over.  We saw descending the stairs, a young princess, a

lovely young woman and I for one had misty eyes.  I suspect my Ellie also did, but I could

not look directly at her, for the moment was so poignant, I dealt with it the best I could. 

Although we were sad for the baby gone, we saw clearly the teen years ahead and smiled at

her beauty and innocence.


I did not hear a baby cry to make me run, full of excitement up those same steps as I did

when Bea arrived, but I slowly ascended them, to go to my wife in our grief, for our son was

born dead.  I believe a part of us died too and were it not for our faith that he dwells forever

with God, I do not know if I could have gone up them and faced my gentle Ellie.  With a look

of grief and a sad smile, all she said was, “God will keep him safe.”  And we sat for a long

time, arms entwined about each other and thanked God that He would look after our son. 

We named our only son Nathan, which means, “Gift from God.”


Our Bea is eighteen and I believe one of the most beautiful brides my tired old eyes have

ever looked upon, on the day she came down those steps, to greet gangly prince, now

grown into  a handsome young man, standing straight and tall beside us.  I saw tears, ready

to flow down her flushed pink cheeks, as she lovingly approached the three that she loved

the most, after her God  of course.


Christmas.  The war is over long enough for our lives to be normal.  We ready ourselves for

our first Christmas with our Bea, our Prince of a Son-in-law and their first child, Nathan.  He

is named for his uncle, the one he would never see on earth, but one we believe he will

meet in Heaven.

By the steps, in the hollow of the curved banister, is a round table, covered by a green cloth,

and in the middle, a gloriously beautiful creche and figurines done by hand by Bea as her

gift to us.  Suspended from the ceiling, not an easy endeavor, but a work of love, hangs a

glowing star, that settles itself perfectly over the creche, illuminating the scene in awesome

light, that greets our guests in such a way, that leaves no doubt who Christmas is really all

about...the Christ Child.


It hurt me deeply to see the medics carry my darling Ellie down those same steps that she

loves so well, and take her to the hospital when she had her stroke.

It hurt again when I had to go up them to our room alone while she was hospitalized.  I took

care of things pretty good as far as caring for the house, feeding myself, watering her

cherished plants, but one special thing I did was run my socked hand along that gleaming

banister as I went to bed.  I actually found myself glancing and smiling as she has always

done, and I realized I did part for her and part for me.  It became something I did, for I

began to feel about them as she does.  I realized the stairway has a story to tell.  And here it


                    Next Day

My Ellie is home.  She will be in her bed for awhile, and then therapy will be introduced into

her routine.  She will do well, for her faith is strong and her spirits are high.  I knew I had my

Ellie back, when I carried her upstairs to put her to bed and she took her good hand and as

if caressing it, ran it lovingly along the hand rail as we went up the steps.

                    Next Time

Well, it’s time to go to bed.  My Ellie is waiting for me to come up and join her for evening

prayers.  We do this every night before we go to sleep.  A beautiful habit, I always say.  I

leave you now.  May God bless you, as He has blessed us. Amen.