Thursday, April 16, 2015

I Was Born

I wanted to share a little bit about me beyond the basics you may already know. 
Most people know I was a nerd long before Sheldon Cooper made it cool.  But before Star Wars and Harry Potter I lived in another world that now seems so far, far away...
I should begin at the beginning.  I was born.  In rural Alabama, I have my first memories... I think we can skip a little here.  I will tell you though, up to the age of 10 I spent most of my time with
 my Great-Grandmothers and my Grandpa.  Being raised by a village that survived the Great Depression is inspirational.  I can say and understand this now, but when I was five it was just how I lived.  I wasn't nearly as enthralled by their stories of sparse "play pretties" and when there was "no such thing as Coca-Cola" as I would be now.  As an adult there are countless stories I'd love to hear regaled.  I'd want to understand and appreciate them in a way that my child self was incapable of.  I did bounce around a bit from each of these folks, but let me make it clear that I NEVER felt unwanted or unloved.  It was just my life.

Both may have been strong and southern, but that, friends and relations, is where the similarity ended.  Mama Ruby was a fiery redhead.  She chewed Redman and cussed like a sailor.  A master fisherman, she hit the topwater based on how the liquid in the mason jar read.  -Something I understand now as the changes in barometric pressure, she knew it as high fishin'.  Her red velvet cake was the best thing you'd ever put in your mouth and her catheads were equally lustful.  Together, we faced down tornadoes and stood in line at the national guard armory for block cheese and powdered milk.  With the exception of my one friend Walter,  I was the only child there.  She had so much more to teach me.  I was only 14 when she died.

Grandma Williams house was 20 miles away and a world apart.  She put me in dresses and took me to church.  We washed our hands and blessed our food.  A mother of seven, she taught me to quilt, cook, sew, crochet and reuse everything.  If something could be repaired, washed and reused -she did it; plastic baggies, paper towels, solo cups, ANYthing.  She had a MacGyver supply of rubberbands, scotch tape and paper clips.  She made playthings out of random items around the house that a million dollars in toys couldn't have compared to.  When I arrived on Friday afternoons, I never knew what the weekend would hold.  We might be drying 100 lbs of apples, canning soup, shelling peas or road tripping to visit her sister's house.  Best though, was when the cousins all converged on the tiny two bedroom house.  Together, we'd sit on our green vinyl cushions because we were too short to reach the table full of good fried eats, cornbread and meal gravy.  The house was busting at the seams, but it was never crowded.  It was what family should be.  

So, you see these women have one other thing in common.  Together, yet seperate, they made my life full.  I got the best of them both and so much more.  I doubt they ever knew how much they shaped who I am or how grateful I am for the lessons.  

There you have it... a little of the "why" a 30 something year old woman would want to do what I do and live how I live.  It's my choice.  I hope they'd be proud.  

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