When I was little, my mama always put our needs and wants above her own. We were very poor and grew all our own fruits and vegetables, had chickens, and got our milk from family members who owned cows. She made everything from scratch and never complained. She always went out of her way to do for others inside and outside our community. She knew when to fight and when to give in and was the sunshine after the rain.
One of my favorite silly moments occurred when I was 7. She was pregnant with her fourth child and working very hard in the June heat picking potatoes. She was 8 months pregnant and about to pop, but tending her garden meant her kids would not go hungry. She bent over and split her pants all the way up the rear end. We laughed until I thought she would need to run to the bathroom! She loved to laugh and make us laugh. Because of times like that, I can now laugh at myself when things don't always go my way.
Sadly, she and the baby passed away a few weeks later, but 26 years later, I can still see those ripped pants and that smile I inherited. I was so blessed to have the kind of mom I want to be myself. I am, and will always be, my kids' mom. And I hope that one day, my girls will have the same love and pride that I felt for my mom.