The Grapes of Wrath

Why does Ma suddenly begin to reminisce about the sad times when she finally reaches a place where she can relax and be happy?

Chapter 22

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I don't think Ma Joad knows what to do. She is so used to being on panic mode that relaxation makes her nervous. Ma has been the driving force of this family and being in "neutral" for awhile is a shock to her. She thinks about what she knows.