As a very young child I wanted for nothing. Everything was provided by my mother. When mom was pregnant with me, my parents separated and dad had little to no dealings with the family. So, mom raised us as a single mother. She cooked, cleaned, cared for us and held down a job so we wouldn’t be hungry or homeless. She was indeed an incredible woman.
I remember her voice, her touch, even her smell. A gifted story-teller, I loved to listen to her. She had a way with voice inflection that was simply unmatched. It’s a wonder I’m not a “Goth” seeing she introduced me to Edgar Allen Poe when I was just about four years old. I remember many nights after her reading to me either from a book or a scary story from her own imagination, being afraid to go to bed. She’d let me crawl into bed with her. I’d snuggle real close. Sleeping with her made me feel so safe.
I remember her straightening my hair on Easter Sunday so I could get all dressed up and go to grandma’s house. She’d put hair-grease on the back of her hand with a cigarette dangling from her mouth she’d meticulously get every hair on the edge of my head. ( You know in my “Kitchen.” Smile) I’d hold my ears down so as not to get burned by the hot comb. It was to no avail, because she’d slap my hands away and tell me,”I’m not gonna burn you child.”
I remember learning to cook under her tutelage. I’m not even half the cook she was. Oh the joy I’d get watching her beat cake batter by hand and laughing as her hips moved in rhythm. How I find myself today mimicking those moments as I whip cake batter or stir up cornbread mix.
Dancing at my wedding, holding my children for the first time, praying with me, and even on occasion crying with me; all of these memories and many more will have to sustain me until I see her again. I look at my daughter and granddaughter, and once in a while I’ll see my own reflection in the mirror and I remember Momma.
Happy Mother’s Day!
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