MAGGIE O'NEAL (my mom)
Mother. There's no other word quite like it or carries the same weight as the word Mother. Whether you call yours, Mama, Mother, or Mom, or whether you're mom is not your natural mother but raised you, she still counts as Mother. Mothers love us despite our many faults or any disagreements we may have had, unconditionally, just like the Father's love for us. :) Most pray for us, were present to place a cool cloth on your brow when you were sick growing up, made you cookies and pressed your school clothes, praised you when it was worthy, and worried over you when she knew something was wrong. My mother told great stories and made us kids laugh. She loved country and western music, gospel and ELVIS! Sometimes I think she liked Elvis more than us kids. Lol! She danced a gig around the living room or kitchen to the music from her Hi-Fi (that'll date you!) and danced with my children as well. She made the best dumplings and cornbread you ever put in your mouth! She lived on social security for many years in a tiny apartment, but never complained about it. She watched every nickel she had just like it was sill the depression she went through, but somehow managed to have a good hot meal on her table always when anyone dropped by or was sick in her complex. She had so many grandchildren and great grandchildren that I've lost track of the total.
My mama was tough! A true Steel Magnolia. She grew up on a farm in Mississippi in a large family. She worked hard in her life in years my dad wasn't present in our family, taking on all kinds of odd jobs to keep us from going under and she wasn't too proud to work at any job if it meant putting food on the table or paying the bills. From doing other people's laundry, ironing, shucking oysters, working at a chicken plant, plucking chickens, picking cotton, waitressing, working on a dairy farm, picking up pecans, and as housekeeper at the local motels on the Gulf coast, she gave it her all her best. I'm sure I've left one, out but these are the ones that I was aware of. You hardly see that kind of dedication any more these days because people now feel they are entitled to "everything" when they're just starting out in life.
Mama kept her Bible always opened on her coffee table as far back as I can remember at whatever passage she was studying that given day. Many of the those verses I can still hear her quote in my head, and are a big part of my life today. She instructed us in the way we should go, and danged if we didn't. We all wanted to make her proud because she was proud of us.
She lost a baby girl at eight months old and a daughter who was nearly 59 and her husband at 62, but yet she toughed it out when life seem to hold no joy. I'm glad she wasn't here to see my other three brothers pass on. She loved being outdoors, and worked in her flower bed until she fell at 87 and never fully recovered.
There's so much more I could say about my mama. She never owned a home, or drove a car, but she filled our home with love and laughter and most of all her Faith. I'm eternally grateful for her telling me who Jesus Christ is. It's been 14 years since her passing, but the loss is just as fresh on my mind, especially on Mother's Day, as it ever was. I'd like to be able to say I have some of her strength in me.
I want to honor her by giving you a chance to receive a copy of my latest book, Deeply Devoted. All you have to do is leave me a comment--short one please, about your mother. I'll randomly draw a name next week. Leave you email address,--put symbols in parenthesis, etc...you know the drill
HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY!