ARTICLES / General /
Open-Faced Sandwich /
By Janie Rosman
By what definition?
A trip to the eye doctor was telling. One wall of
the waiting room had large plastic canisters of
assorted sweets. He likes hard candies, so I brought
him two and sat down to read a magazine.
Out of the corner of my eye, I watched Dad
attempt to open one candy. He gave it his all while
I sat there wanting to help without embarrassing
Children want to do things by themselves. My
niece, eight, and my nephew, 12, are fiercely
independent and ask for help only if strength is
required or if something is out of their reach.
“Would you please open this?” Dad asked, his eyes
admitting frustration at his physical limitations.
At that moment, I felt sorry for him—the
once-strapping man who served in the United States
Army and who, fatherless at age 20, was emotionally
strong for his young widowed mother.
“Thank you,” he said, eyes now showing gratitude.
July 4 of this year he had another stroke, and a
little more of his strength disappeared. I know he
struggles to ask for help; more times than not, I
sense his need without his asking.
And although my parents celebrated their 56th
wedding anniversary (October 1955), I worry about
them like they used to—and probably still do—worry
about me. I’ve made plans to move; yet each time,
the gods smile and change them. As one friend says,
“You can get there from here only if you’re happy
with your ‘here.’”
So for now, I remain an open-faced sandwich.
Believing that everyone has a
story and needs someone to tell it, Janie Rosman
writes about community, lifestyles and business for
various media. Her byline appeared in Ulster
Publishing, Gannett newspapers, IN Magazine ( Texas
), Westchester Parent and Westchester Commerce
Magazine. Previously she reported for a weekly