Through Any Given Door ~ Catherine Sevenau

Catherine Sevenau Catherine Sevenau is a writer, humorist, and storyteller living in Sonoma, California. The stories in this series are excerpts from her book, Through Any Given Door, a Family Memoir. The full memoir is available as a web series at A longtime Realtor and Owner/Broker at CENTURY 21 Wine Country, she can be reached at [email protected]


No bed of roses…

Posted on July 2, 2022 by Catherine Sevenau

Chapter 36: 1947 • Sonora 

Missive to Marceline (part 2 of 2)

May 2, 1947 (continuation of the letter from my mother to her favorite niece)

Boy, if I had the chance to live my life over again do you think I would have gotten married at my age. I’ll say I wouldn’t have.

He may be wonderful to you and probably is, but did you ever hear that men change, once they get you, they don’t have to court you anymore—they don’t have to be so considerate of you. Another thing, they have a wife to support now, so he has to work and work hard, they are too darned tired to go out and it can get pretty deadly staying at home night after night. Maybe you think now that you won’t mind staying home, but when a person is young they should go out and have a good time. Time enough to sit home by the fire when you are old, and if there are children then you are tied down.

Don’t do it, kid. Don’t do it. He may be a swell guy, don’t drink, don’t smoke, and don’t gamble. Well, Carl doesn’t do those things either but do you think I have had any bed of roses? If I could change places with Carl’s sister Elizabeth, who has never married, has a good job and is her own boss, would I do it? I would jump at the chance and don’t think I wouldn’t. If she wants to buy a new coat or dress or take a trip does she have to ask anyone first. No, she is her own boss. I feel sure that I am just wasting my time, but you can’t say you weren’t told, and I haven’t tried to mince words.

We expect to be in Minnesota or on the road from the 7th of June until the 29th. But if you still decide that you are going to take the leap then I wish you all the happiness in the world, but I hope and pray that you change your mind before it is too late.

Lots of love,


P.S. Tell your mother that Carleen’s arm is coming along fine. It must have not been a bad break as it didn’t hurt her a bit like the first time. I am going to the doctor with her tomorrow. 

N.C. (Carleen had broken her arm the first time when she ran it through the wringer washer. This second break was when she fell off her bike.)

Unable to understand from where she spoke, Mom’s letter crushed Marceline. Everyone else had already tried to talk her out of marrying Roy, and now her staunchest ally had turned against her. She was so in love with this big handsome football player, how could everyone be saying these things to her, especially Babe? 

When Marceline showed the letter to her fiancé, Roy said, “This is the last you’ll ever have anything to do with her.” She never spoke to my mother again.

To be continued…


Catherine Sevenau is a writer, humorist, and storyteller living in Sonoma, California. The stories in this series are excerpts from her book, Through Any Given Door, a Family Memoir, the full memoir is available at Catherine is an author of three books, several volumes of family genealogy, and a longtime Broker/Realtor at CENTURY 21 Epic Wine Country. She can be reached at [email protected]


Sonoma Sun | Sonoma, CA