Saturday, January 14, 2012

January.........The Beginning

January 2012......Mama had a birthday this month and if she were still here on earth, she would have been 76 years old. I want to dedicate the first month of the new year to my mama and to my sisters.....just as we look to the new year as a new beginning, we are thankful to our heavenly Father for giving us our own beginning with a mother who always put her girls first and opened her heart to everyone God put in her life.........

Mama would be so surprised we have made it to the year 2012! She was so certain the world would end and we would all be home in heaven before we saw the beginning of another century. Well, the world still stands, but she couldn't wait around any longer and went to be with our Lord in 1997.

Well, Mama, if you are watching from that little "Cabin in the Corner of Glory Land" you always sang about, you know we still miss you and carry your memories in our heart. And if I were guessing, God had something greater for you than a little cabin......He was, no doubt,  waiting to welcome you into your "Stately Mansion" that you now share with our  sweet daddy.

Mama, Dessie Mai Spears, was born on January 8, 1936,  the 4th child and 3rd daughter to Grady and America Spears.  She grew up in a large family of 11 children but her oldest brother died at the age of 12, so she barely remembered him.
I remember growing up and visiting my grand parents on Sunday and seeing all my cousins, aunts and uncles. In a book I have started and hope to finish one day, I recall those Sundays at Mama and Papa Spears' house.

"Sunday at Mama and Papa’s was a treat. My sisters and I got to play with a whole different set of cousins. Mama came from a large family of 10 children. Actually, there had been another sibling, the oldest boy who had died at the age of 12 with appendicitis. Mama had 3 brothers and 6 sisters; she was the 3rd from the oldest living children. In the early years, mama and her 2 older sisters were the only ones with children but slowly the family grew…. 
Going to Mama and Papa’s was the highlight for our mama after a long week; this was an event we all got dressed up for. Mama would dress her girls in little hand-made dresses she had proudly sown or altered from hand-me-downs. Thinking back to those days, I can imagine the excitement  mama must have felt getting ready to go home and visit her family. She was such a young girl at the time, married and already a mom. My memories are vivid when there was only my baby sister and me. Mama was about 20 years old at the time and she was raising a family among her "new family" who were practically strangers; how exciting it was to go home and visit with her mother and sisters. The laughter would echo from the kitchen as they prepared the Sunday meal. When the meal was ready, the men always ate first.  When they were finished, the dishes were washed and dried, then the table was set for the women to gather and eat. When they finished their meal, the dishes were washed again and the children finally were called to the table. There was always enough food for everyone, but occasionally all that was left of the fried chicken were backs and wings. Mama later told her girls she didn’t like making the children wait ‘til last’ and that is why at our mama’s house, the children were always served first." 


It is hard to imagine Mama as a child and young girl. but pictures tell the story when we are not there to see for ourselves. 



Mama was sweet 16 and  daddy was 26 when they fell in love and got married. It was not uncommon at that time for girls to marry early and they usually married older men.  We grew up listening to the stories mama told us about how they had meet and married.

                      Happy Birthday Mama......... it doesn't manner how many years go by, you will always be forever young in our hearts. The lives of your children and your grandchildren are so much richer by having you as the beginning of who we were, who we  are and who we will become.

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