Thursday, May 6, 2010
Tribute to Loubie; My mother, my friend
My Mother is the strongest woman I have ever known. Sometimes, especially since growing older, I often think of her as a true miracle. She was born in 1930 in an economically depressed area called Appalachia, VA. Her mother was uneducated. So was her father, who worked in the coal mines of Southwest Virginia for many years. My mother, who we lovingly call "Loubie," somehow made it into college at the University of Virginia, where she graduated the nursing program and went on to become an RN and LPN. The first person in her family to graduate college. Her great love of the written word has pretty much inspired me to both read and explore writing. Even today, her favoriate things are reading, Jeopardy (the television show) and Crossword puzzles. Oh, and spending time with her great grandchildren. She is a true caregiver. Heck, I think she invented the word when she was in her early 20's. That's when she took care of her very first patient - her husband who was dying. Even with a young baby underfoot, her husband was diagnosed with a terminal illness. And while devastated, he asked her to consider having another baby - hoping it would be a boy to carry on his family name. And knowing that she soon would be a single mother (back in 1950, are you kidding me?) she agreed to try. And soon, she was the mother of two children - children who were 10 months apart - both in diapers - burying her husband in a town where she knew no one.
From there, she started on her care-giving journey and to be very honest with you, some 60 years later - at age 80, she is still taking care of people. Now, her great-grandchildren are her pride and joy. They simply adore her and she is quite energetic and loves to take them - where else - but the library! We have all gleaned a love of reading from my Mom.
You will be hard pressed to find another woman of her era who is more energetic, intelligent or better loved than my mom, Loubie. So, on Mother's Day and in honor of my Mom, Loubie, I offer these words:
Mom, without you, there would be no me. Your love, your attention, your guidance, have made me who I am. Without you, I would be lost, wandering aimlessly. Sure, I may have gotten there someday, but it sure was nice following along in the path that you carved out.
You showed me the way to serve, to accomplish, to persevere. Without you, there would be an empty space I could never fill, no matter how I tried. Instead, because of you, I am a much better person today. A better mother. A better wife. A better daughter. And better friend.
Thank you, Loubie. I have always loved you and I always will. And I am so very proud to call you my Mother.