In Chapter 5, Gypsy asks Mama about the time when Daddy chose her over her Aunt Belle. Mama remembers with regret that Belle was devastated, but, "mesmerized" by the handsome Amos, she didn't pay much attention to how her sister felt. Belle languished in her room for days, then one morning she came out of her room, "all dressed up fit to kill". She announced her intention to "find (her)self a beau", and that night she met Everett Prater and ran off with him.
Woodrow and Gypsy go to Sunday school in Chapter 6. Later, they go out to Gypsy's tree house overlooking Slag Creek. The two children discuss "what they really want" in life. Woodrow wants his mother back, and his eyes to be straight, and Gypsy wants to cut her hair, because she feels "invisible" when people talk about her beautiful hair but never see what is underneath. Woodrow believes his mother wanted "to get out of her life". He will tell Gypsy later what he thinks really happened to her.
In Chapter 7, Woodrow tells Gypsy that there is a mysterious place behind their shack in Crooked Ridge where "the air is thick and it vibrates". His mother knew about it too, and called it "where two worlds touch". She spent a lot of time there just before she disappeared, and Woodrow believes she somehow "went across the doorsill" and entered that place. Belle Prater felt like she was being "squeezed to death" in her life, and Woodrow thinks that "she kinda willed herself to leave it".