For our Retro Week, my choice is a blog I wrote back in 2007, the year P&P went online. I’m not sure how many of you have read it.
The cowboy had a whole passel of unwritten codes and sayings about how to conduct themselves in the West. In fact, they’d probably fill an entire book. They were usually short and blunt because the cowboy was sparing of his words. But they were brimming with a lot of wisdom. Breaking one of these rules might land you in a heap of trouble.
Love and protect your family.
Be gentle and kind to your horse.
Respect yourself and others.
Treat the land well and it’ll be good to you.
Don’t spit on the sidewalk.
Keep a lid on your can of cuss-words in the company of womenfolk.
Don’t stick your nose in where it doesn’t belong or it might get broken.
And the list goes on. The saying that sticks in my mind lately is this one—“Dance With The One That Brung You.”
It was considered proper etiquette for a lady to always remember who brought her to the dance and to show her appreciation by nothing less than dancing with him. Abandoning her escort to dance with another was considered ill-advised, not to say unmannerly, and tantamount to throwing down the gauntlet. It was a spurning that could lead to serious consequences—and had sometimes been known to cause a case of lead poisoning.
Grant you, society today is very different from the way it was a hundred or so years ago. But, most of us who remember the unwritten rules of etiquette fare much better than those who’ve thrown them away. Believe you me, I still cut a wide berth around someone who hawks up a big wad of phlegm and spits it on the sidewalk. That’s gross. And we sure haven’t done too good a job at taking care of the land. We’ve polluted and ravaged what once was so bountiful.
I remember my mama’s teachings and try to live accordingly. So far her wisdom has steered me in the right direction. When I was born in the late 1940’s my parents, two sisters, a brother, and me lived in a tent. Here’s a picture of it and of me. This was my first experience with riding a horse. It took my parents a long time to recover from the Great Depression. They never had much to begin with and what little they had was lost when the Depression hit. They were long on pride and short on money. The tent was a blessed, prized possession. They’d seen plenty of times when the sky was their only roof and the ground their bed. Not that they complained. There’s something to be said for doing what you can with what you have. I’m not ashamed of having lived in a tent for the early part of my life. Being poor is no reason to hang your head. I think if some of these spoiled Hollywood celebs had a lot less money and a more stable structure in their lives they wouldn’t get in so much trouble. Maybe instead of jail the judge should sentence them to live on a working ranch for a year or two? That’d do more good than a few weeks in rehab. That might help them learn to appreciate the wonderful gifts they’ve been given and keep their dadgum bloomers on. Sure couldn’t hurt. Nothing else seems to work.
I think people should always remember where they came from, how they got where they are, and who brought them to this dance called life. I’m proud of my humble beginnings. No matter the success or accomplishment that may come my way, I never want to forget for a single moment the place I came from—the sacrifice of loving parents who are already gone from this earth. They left a treasured legacy in that they gave their kids the very best they could. I know it makes me deeply satisfied to have been so lucky. Because of them I have a clear view of the world and how I fit in it.
I hope I never get too uppity or forget my raising. And I want to always remember to dance with the one who brought me.
Do you have memories of your growing-up years that still influence you today?
Phyliss Miranda is giving today’s prize. The Winner will receive a $25 gift card to Bath and Body Works. Woo-Hoo! Let’s Get Crackin’!!
Here in the Texas Panhandle, we do love our cowboys. There's just something about a man in a Stetson and jeans that makes my heart beat faster. I'm not much of a cook but I love to do genealogy and I'm a bit of a rock hound. I'm also a NY Times & USA Today bestselling author of historical western romance. You can contact me through my website and I'd love to connect with you on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and more. HAPPY READING!
38 thoughts on “Retro Week Day Two: Dance With the One That Brung You by Linda Broday”
My favorite memories were spent with my grand parents. I was mostly raised by them. My dad left when I was 6mths old and mom worked and went to college. So I lived with them most of my life. I was taught to respect my elders. You always said yes/no ma’m/ sir. Kids this day and time are just rude and disrespectful. My grandparents have since passed on and I miss them so much.
Growing up in an abusive home and a bad first marriage (though he didn’t hit me, verbal abuse is just as bad) has made me into a very strong person. I no longer stay quiet and I express my feelings. I respect and listen to others and care about their feelings. I have learned to appreciate what I have in life (though it may not be much).
I spent a lot of time with my great-aunt Anna. She lived by the Golden Rule. Treat others as you want to be treated. She also said, never say a bad word about another as it will get back at you and bite you.
I felt that I had carried her advice with me when I received compliments from both teachers and other parents about how polite, helpful and respectful my children were to them and also to their classmates.
Wonderful advice! For me, I still have friends from growing up. There is something incredibly safe about a shared past.
Linda, loved your post the first time but it seems even more relevant today! I grew up poor, too. It wasn’t much fun at the time, but it sure did make me strong.
Hi Kim…………thanks for stopping by. Loved your comment. It really reflects my own views. It’s so sad to see this new “It’s all about me” generation. I cherish the fact that I was raised to appreciate things and not take them for granted.
Hope you have a great day.
Hi Janine…………I’m glad you enjoyed my blog today. Hope it didn’t bring back too many bad memories. Just think how strong you are now and know that many people are pulling for you. Sometimes we don’t understand why we have to go through the things we do but there is always a reason. Rejoice in the new you.
Hi Laurie G………….Thanks for stopping by and helping us celebrate this special week at P&P. Your great Aunt Anna sounds like a marvelously wise woman. You’re were so lucky to have someone like her in your life. It appears you turned out okay.
Hope your day is full of sunshine and laughter.
Hi Sherri…………So glad to see you this morning. Glad you enjoyed my blog. In this fast-paced world that gets a little crazy sometimes it certainly helps to remember where you came from and how you got to where you are. I wish I had kept in touch with some of my childhood friends. I envy you that. So glad you have those friends now to help you celebrate the path your lives took. You can’t put enough value on good friends.
Good morning, Margaret………….I’m glad you enjoyed reading my post again. Yep, there’s nothing wrong at all with coming from a poor family. Like you, I didn’t see the advantages back then but I sure appreciate how I was raised now. It’s amazing to see how far I’ve come and that I’m doing things no one in the world expected me to do. We are really strong women.
My life is like Chris Young’s song voices. Mostly the voice I hear is the wisdom from my Nannie (my mother’s mother). She was a pistol, grew up hard during the great depression to poor parents who really never had anything to beginning with.
Her father was a drunk who ran off and left three children after the death of their mother. They were passed from family member to family member. My grandmother being the oldest (13) became a servant to whatever member she was with.
She was a hard lady but taught us all values and manners. And my goodness the old sayings and common sense that woman had. There isn’t a day I don’t remember and quote her.
You are so right about the younger generations, no matter how much money you have children should learn to earn there way. No one will appreciate things like those that have to work for it.
That could be said for our country, what this country needs is a dirt poor person in there with common sense.
I will get off my soap box. Thanks Linda, loved this post.
Have a great day
Your post was beautiful and special. I was raised to work hard, and strive and succeed. My parents values and principles are important to live by.
Wonderful post. I was raised to be respectful of others and their property, to obey the law and be an upstanding person with values.
An uplifting message which most should heed. Manners, work ethic and morals were ingrained when I was growing up. It is too bad that this generation thinks that nothing matters in life and respect is unknown.
Wonderful post and an important message. Manners, respect and hard work is to be regarded as the norm. Thanks for this excellent start to my day.
My mom always taught me to treat others like I want to be treated and to never burn a bridge because you never when you’ll have to go back across it. Her words came back to haunt me once. I quit a job but thankfully, I did give them a two week notice. So when I got laid off from this other job, I was able to go back to the previous one. Now, if I would have told them to kiss where the sun don’t shine, I never would have been able to go back 🙂
Adversity is to be respected especially when a person can realize their dreams. Respect and kindness has disappeared, unfortunately. Hard work is not considered normal. What happened to the good old days, when people were able to work, be respectful, and considerate. I miss those days. Poor upbringing accounts for this. I worked, and my family was always busy and my kids were the same. thank you for your true words today.
My best memories during my growing up years are of my grandparents. They taught me how laugh and have fun. I learned that laughter is the best way to get through just about anything.
I spent the summer with my Grandmother and she taught me a lot of wisdom. At the time, i didn’t realize it. She had only an eighth grade education but she was very wise. One of the things that stuck with me all my life was that she said “if you are gossiping about someone chances are they are gossiping about you. Do you want them to do that?” I can truthfully say I have never gossiped about others. Just not my thing.
Pretty much all my childhood memories guide and influence me today! I grew up in a fantastic home and in a small but influential town where everyone there loved you and helped raise you! It was truly the best of the best and I never forget it! Thankfully, my parents still live there so I get to experience it every time I go back and my adult children continue to enjoying visiting too! I know I am extremely blessed!
I met my friend, Karen, when we were both about 3 years old. I live 2 blocks up from our elementary school, & she lived 2 blocks down from it. One year, our music teacher taught us the song “Seventy-Six Trombones”. We found it so comical that we started singing it when we’d walk to each other’s house together after school. Karen & I are still friends, & whenever we hear that song we call each other & burst into laughter. It brings back such sweet memories!
I remember this post because it reminded me to always remember my roots and to look out for the other guy. My parents raised me that way and I raised my children that way. I admire those who live by the Golden Rule.
Linda, what a wonderful post. I’d read it before I ever became a Filly and remembered the love and lessons you have in it. Being a native Texan, not just a Texan but from the Panhandle, the values you mentioned, plus many the others wrote about, were simply engrained into us. We didn’t know there was an alternative. If we mouthed off, we’d get a whoopin’ from Mama and it wasn’t called child abuse, but a reminder to respect authority. In those days, teachers could teach, not double as a security guard. I love being a native Texan and raising my two girls here. Now my DH wasn’t born in Texas, but his parents got him here as fast as they could before he began school. We love Texas, and thank you for the memories … dance with the one who brung you. Big hugs and I’m so honored to give away a gift certificate to one lucky commenter. Phyliss
I always remember fishing with my papaw. He did little things for us that showed he cared and he always respected other people no matter who they were or what they did. I took that to heart and try to do that. I remember the stories my older relatives have told me so I can tell them to other younger people someday.
For me the ones that made my life wonderful were my grandparents especially my grandmother. She was my rock… made me feel like I was special, someone important… everytime we went to visit them I was beyond happy. The little things she showed me and taught me… the wise things she shared… the funny things she told me will always be with me even though she is gone.
Beautiful blog, Linda. It gave me some insight into the lady I know you to be. Your parents would be proud. My mom and dad were teachers in a small town–my mother in the elementary school, my dad in the high school, where he later became principal. They instilled values of honesty, frugality and hard work in my sister and me. They both loved the outdoors and we spent happy times exploring Utah’s beautiful wild country. They’re gone now, but they remain the best people I’ve ever known.
I don’t think a person ever gets over their childhood whether it be good or bad or some of both. I really think it shapes you – not to say you can’t improve on things but I think some things are with you forever even when you don’t alway realize it.
Beautiful post, Linda, and such good reminders for today. I try to be open indeed and modern, but so much of today’s “entertainment” grosses me out. Bring on those cowboys NOW.
There are so many words of wisdom in the blog and the comments, today. Thank you everyone for sharing.
My grandmother was full of wisdom when it came to ways to help you have a better life. I’m grateful for having known her and spending a lot of time with her. Since I remember that so well I find that I am trying to help my grandkids to enjoy life more by passing on some of her wisdom. One think I remember her saying was that it wasn’t always the “pretty boy” that would make the best husband.
Hi Sherry A………..How right you are. Cling to your raising and always dance with the one that brought you. Those old cowboys and Depression mothers can sure teach you a thing or two.
Hi Diane………I’m so glad you enjoyed my post today. It seems to have been a subject everyone has strong feelings for.
Hi Crystal GB……….Thanks for coming by. I’m glad you enjoyed my subject. When I ran across this old blog from 2007 I felt it needed to be shared again.
Hi Pearl……….Thank you for stopping by to leave a comment. Having core values and morals counts for so much in life.
Hi Ellie……….I’m glad to get your day started. Hope it carried you until quitting time. We had a hot one here today. Maybe you were cooler where you’re at.
Hi Sheila G………..Yep, don’t ever burn those bridges. Sure creates problems when you need to go back across. I hope your day was crammed full of nice things.
Hi Anne……… Hard work never killed anyone and it is better when you have money to go to the grocery store. Thanks for stopping by.
Hi Amy C………..I don’t know what I’d do without laughter. Sure does make you feel better and gives you a better outlook on things. I hope you have a wonderful evening.
Hi JOYE………Oh Grandmothers and their wisdom. I don’t know what we’d have done without good honest people in our lives. I hope you have a wonderful afternoon.
Hi Valri Western……….Yes indeed, you are blessed. Life is such a wonderful dance, especially when we have amazing partners to dance with. Have a good evening.
Hi Maria P………..How wonderful to still have your childhood friend in your life. That’s really special. Don’t ever lose track of her. Glad my post brought back pleasant memories of your friend.
Hi Connie J……….Boy, you’ve been a loyal P&P visitor for a long while! I was almost sure no one would remember this blog. Glad you’re still around. HOpe you continue for a long time.
Hi Phyliss……….Thank you for giving away such a great prize. You’re so generous. Yep, I didn’t dare sass my mother because I didn’t want to see the disappointment in her eyes. She didn’t even have to threaten me, just look at me and I straightened right up. I couldn’t bear to have her put out with me. It killed my soul and I’d cry and cry. Yes, it’s a shame teachers don’t get to teach for doing all the other stuff. We grew up in a golden time without all this crime and willful disobedience. My childhood was magical. Of course having a vivid imagination played a huge part.
Wishing you lots of luck with your deadline.
Hi Kaylea………You must be a born storyteller. But I think passing on your family’s stories is a such an amazing wonderful thing. Your kids will love you for this.
Hi Colleen………..Your grandmother sounds like a special lady. I’m sure you miss her something awful. The best way you can repay her is by being the best mother and grandmother and friend you can be. She’ll be smiling down from heaven.
Hi Elizabeth……….I’m glad you enjoyed seeing my blog again even though it’s been more than a few years. Sounds like your parents were amazing people. I’d like to have known them. Hold fast to your memories.
Hi Catslady……….I think you’re right. We are shaped by our past be it good or bad. It’s the things we learn growing up that always stay with us.
Hi Tanya………..I’m with you. Let’s have a good old western revival on TV and movies. Sure would be a wonderful departure from the violence and sex. I fear the world’s gone to hell in a hand basket!
Hi Hilltop Farmwife……….Thank you for stopping by and reading all the words of wisdom. Glad you enjoyed it.
Hi Jackie W………….Your grandmother sounds like a wonderful lady who knew best. She was right. You can’t judge a book by its cover. And yes, you can honor her memory by passing on her words of wisdom to your kids and grandkids. Thanks for stopping by.
I love this post and I can remember it from before because it stands out. Everyone should always remember where they came from. I didn’t have the easiest of childhoods myself. My mother was injured very bad when I was eight and was left crippled, and was never the same. We had to kind of take over with everything after that. My older sister was 13 and that was a lot for children to go through. All and all it made us stronger people. I have never forgot where I came from and never will.
My hubby and I started line dancing when we first dated. I always danced with him! 🙂 Great post, I only wish people had those manners still today.
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