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Getting to know you January 7 Weekend edition


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For better or worse, I'd have to echo that it was Mom.

Most important lessons she has taught me:

*God and family first

*It's better to laugh than cry

*It's not gossip...it's a prayer chain

*Get your education!

*No one likes to spend a lot of time at a pity party

*What fun is life w/o friends?

*You can do anything, w/ God, your family, and friends beside you

:) Kelly

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Has to be Jim. I was lucky enough to spend 27 of my 47 years with him. He was a lot like my Dad which reinforced those positives in life - humor, integrity, thirst for knowledge, love of animals. Besides, he was 9 years older and I always told him he raised me. I think he thought he was owed some child support for the duty! Great man.


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My Earl, no question. He taught me patience, common sense, trust, generosity, but most important total and unconditional committed love.

My Mother was 42 when I was born and kind of too tired to be a close Mom and my Dad died when I was 7. So while I got my genes from them I don't think they influenced my life that much.

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When I first posted this question I thought I could answer it in one word Mama. Then I started thinking about it and you all know me well enough by now to know that I am never a person of few words.

Mama shaped me. She made me what I am. Some were things that she said like "just because you are poor doesn't mean you can't be clean" and "where there is a will there is a way" and "when you have a job you have a responsibility to be there on time and if you are paid for 8 hours you work for 8 hours". Those were things that Mama not only said but lived by.

She raised 5 kids working in a canery. During canning season she would often work 10 or 12 hours a day 7 days a week. I can still see her at night sometimes up at midnight doing laundry and mopping floors. She cooked 2 meals a day everyday when we were growing up. Every meal she made bread (biscuits or cornbread) store bought bread was unheard of.

The thing is with Mama she worked so much to raise us that I never really got to know her. I knew what she was but I never knew who she was. I didn't know what her dreams had been or what her thoughts were. Everything she did was for her family. There was never any time or money left for her.

Those were good things and I think because of her I am a fairly good person. The problem was that I stayed in a marriage for years that was unfullfilling and kept me isolated from much of the world. I did that because of Mama's example. I was home with my children until they were nearly grown never working outside my home because I didn't want my children to grow up without me. Then how could I leave my marriage because of my problems? Compared to her life and marriage mine was paradise despite my unhappiness.

Now I can say that Johnny is the one who made me who I am. I was so young when we met(15) that he molded me and taught me how to be me. He taught me that there is good in everyone but sometimes you have to look a little harder to find it. It showed me that nature has so much to offer if you just take the time to look. He showed me how a person could be gentle and still be strong.

He was so handsome and talented and soooooo sexy. That's all most people saw of him his carisma. He attracted people but most of them never really knew why. I did because he showed me a side of himself that made me a better person.

During the last two months of his life what I am and who I am often came into conflict. I wanted so much to give him the kind of home that he had never had that I was always busy. I thought I should give him everything he ever wanted and I just didn't see that he already had that. He had my unconditional love. He appreciated everything I did for him but would often tell me that he just wanted me to sit with him. If I could only do it over again I would know that doing for someone is wonderful but being with them is the best gift that you can give someone you love and who loves you.

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You know, I thought long and hard about that question. I always adored Dad. He died of a massive heart attack almost 12 years ago. When I found him and after I called 911, I went to him and put his head in my lap and covered him with a blanket. I couldn't leave him lying there by himself. Now Mom has her cancer and Alheimer's. Watching her has been devastating. The point is, both of my parents gave the great gift of patience and common sense. There have been other people that I am thankful for in being a part of my life, but, I have to thank my parents the most for loving me the way they did and knowing when to say NO even if I didn't like it. May God Bless both of my parents! Thank you for letting me share.


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