Mom and Dad's Waltz: A Dance of Love and Sacrifice

By Dangerfield, Rena | Human Architecture: Journal of the Sociology of Self-Knowledge, Fall 2002 | Go to article overview

Mom and Dad's Waltz: A Dance of Love and Sacrifice


Dangerfield, Rena, Human Architecture: Journal of the Sociology of Self-Knowledge


   I'd walk for miles--cry or smile
   For my mama and daddy
   I want them--I want them to know
   How I feel--my love is real
   For my mama and daddy
   I want them to know--I love them so.

   (Chorus)

   In my heart the joy tears start 'cause I'm happy
   And I pray every day for Mom and Pappy
   And each night-I'd
   walk for miles--cry or smile
   For my mama and daddy
   I want them to know--I love them so.

   I'd fight in wars--do all the chores
   For my mama and daddy
   I want them to live on--'til they're called
   I'd work and slave--and never rave
   For my mama and daddy
   Because I know I owe them my all.

   --(Lefty Frizell 1951)

I was born in 1951 in Peru, Indiana, to Martha Mary and Wallace Dangerfield, the sixth of seven children, and the fourth daughter. Due to the fact that there is a twenty years' difference between my oldest and youngest siblings, there were only my sisters Vicki and Rita and me at home until my little brother was born in 1958. My oldest brother Tom had joined the Navy straight out of high school and was married and starting his own family shortly after. My next oldest brother, Larry, was honorably discharged from the Navy when he was discovered to be nearly deaf in one ear after only being in for a few weeks. He married shortly after being discharged. My oldest sister, Jane, was thrown out of the house when I was very young; I only remember her leaving, never living there. My sister Rita, the middle child, got out of the house as soon as she could by marrying the husband of the woman she baby-sat for. Most of my childhood memories of home revolve around Mom and Dad, Vicki, Rick, and me in the brick house in the tiny town of North Grove, Indiana.

My oldest brother, Tom, was the family hero. He was so handsome in his uniform when he came home on leave. He always came home in his uniform, carrying duffel bags, suitcases, and his guitar. The first night of his visit always entailed Mom cooking him a big platter of bacon and eggs, then they got out the little Decca record player and played the old 78's. Then pretty soon, Tom would get his guitar out and play Mom and Dad's Waltz. Mom would get teary-eyed and both she and Dad would be happier than I usually got to see them.

Mom and Dad's Waltz was written and performed by Lefty Frizell, and was a top ten hit on the 1951 hit list. William Orville "Lefty" Frizell was born in 1928 in Tuckertown, Texas, where his father worked in the oil fields. This was during the time of the western oil boom. Lefty worked in the oil fields shortly, then began to sing in local honky tonk bars until he was discovered and began making his living as a singer. Mom and Dad's Waltz was a number one hit in 1951.

I didn't know where the song came from as a child. I thought it was old then, too. It was always a part of my life from the earliest time I can remember. My Dad had lots of old records and played them whenever he had too much to drink. They were mostly western songs or songs about work. He also loved westerns on the television we got when I was about nine years old. My mother preferred songs like Goodnight Irene, and sang them as she did her work.

Mom and Dad's Waltz was the one song they both loved, but then Tom dedicated that one to them every time he came home. Mom and Dad's Waltz became more than just a song to my family. It was the one time when feelings of love and warmth predominated over feelings of anger and disappointment. My Mom struggled to keep us fed and clothed on Dad's earnings, taking in ironing, doing mending for people, anything to bring in some extra money. Over the years, Dad brought less and less of his pay check home. He would come home drunk and mad, and Mom would confront him about the money and of course, it was gone. They would argue and fight, and eventually he started hitting her. When things got to that point, the visits from Tom and the music was the only thing that would bring things back to normal, at least for a little while. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Mom and Dad's Waltz: A Dance of Love and Sacrifice
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.