Loved you Then – Love You Still

Jr Hi Grad w-Mother2

Mother’s Day brings memories of varying shapes and sizes.  As a child, my memory of Mother’s Day is the pretty red rose that was pinned to my shoulder to indicate that my mother was living.  After 1959 it was a white rose for my Mom in memory of Grandmother Blansit who had slipped away.  And, how could I ever forget, the pretty hydrangeas given away at our Church to the oldest, youngest, and mother with the most children present.  Sometimes this practice got complicated – but it was always interesting.

But as the years have passed, the reflections are deeper and seemingly more significant than a flower on the shoulder.  Like the memory of Mother’s tender care as I struggled to breathe with asthma.  While I wasn’t aware at such a young age, I do remember visiting between two churches and ultimately settling at the church in Rossville a few blocks from our home.  I remember Pastor Jordon coming to our home to pray for me during an asthma attack.  Shortly after that I was taken to the hospital where my tonsils were removed, and the asthma was soon gone.  The back story, I learned as I grew older, was that my Mother sought the Lord in my behalf and felt in her heart that if they would follow the Lord to membership in the church in Rossville, He would heal their daughter. What can I say – except I am here to tell the story that it happened. 

Mother was never warm and fuzzy but, if she was anything, she was real.  She didn’t coddle us, but we never doubted her love and most of the time we learned of her sympathies after the fact – like the morning she walked me to school for the first time.  Mrs. Grimes, bless her sweet memory, welcomed me into the classroom and Mother turned to leave – and I started crying – honestly, while I don’t remember the details, it must have been quite an outburst.  Always known for doing what was best for us, Mother kept walking, leaving me to the care of Mrs. Grimes.  It was many years later that Mother told me that as she left, she walked around the building to the open window of that first-grade classroom and stood under the window that was higher than her head until she determined that Mrs. Grimes was not going to be mean to me. 

Did I tell you I cried when she left me in the classroom?  Well, that wasn’t the only time I cried – I cried when she left me anywhere for any reason.  Like the time she was going to someone’s bridal or baby shower – she dropped me off at Grandma’s house and before she was a block down the road, I was chasing the car, screaming to the top of my lungs – and what did she do?  She stopped the car, picked me up and took me with her only to arrive at the destination which had two big ditches on each side of the driveway – and I whimpered the entire shower asking if we were gong to fall into the ditch on the way out of the driveway.  Poor mother!

Or the time Loretta was hit by a car a block from the house – and passerby’s thought I was the one that had been hit – sweet, quiet, little Loretta was simply standing there begging to continue her trip to grandma’s house – and I was … (you guessed it). Yet if my fears and tears caused my mother any angst, I never knew it. 

On the morning of my Junior High Graduation in May/June 1960, my parents were living in Tifton, GA. As I was preparing to leave my grandmother’s home, I noticed a car in front of the home. Peeking out the window trying to see who in the world was coming here at this hour of the morning, I was shocked to see my Mother getting out of the local taxi – she had ridden the bus all night, caught the cab and arrived in time to attend the ceremony at the school. She had pulled this off without a hint that she was coming! It made my day!

Thank you, Mother, for memories that I cherish.  I loved you then – I love you still!



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