“That’s My Mama”…Celebrating 91 Years And Counting
I first met her on December 27, 1955. She was my first love and contrary to many psychiatrists it has nothing to do with breastfeeding. Today my siblings and I recognize her as mom or mother. More important we know the woman who raised us as our first “Ride or Die Chick”.
As an infant and child, not only did she change our diapers but she was the first one to feed us when we were hungry, console us when we were hurting, bathe us when we were dirty and disciplined us when we were wrong. Her dreams for us growing up wasn’t necessarily for us to be a doctor (although my sister did grow up to become one), a lawyer or even president of the United States it was simply, that we be healthy, kind to others and have a positive impact on society. And of course give her grandkids!
For our part, prior to understanding they were just jokes, my brother, Scoop (Gary) and I issued many a “beat downs” for somebody talking about our “mama”. It was little to no consolation even when “mama’ tried to assure us by dismissing it away with the age old adage; “sticks and stones will break my bones but names will never hurt me”.
I have no doubt that we all, as sons, want to make our mothers proud. We don’t start out wanting to be bad, ungrateful or take our mother’s love for granted. However we often do because we know she will give us her last so that we can have the best. We do so knowing she will mortgage her house to keep us out of jail even though time after time we have proven we “ain’t” worth a damn! Because, regardless how old, unemployed, uneducated, and filled with excuses we are she will still allow us to live at home taking care of us by providing us with food, clothes, spending change, and the use of her car.
A son will spend his days chasing after a “big butt and a smile”, and spending his paycheck on weekends “making it rain” for a stripper but when was the last time you recall an athlete, whether high school, college or the pros give a shout out to his girlfriend or a stripper from the club when the TV cameras did a close up of him during a game. Ultimately every son wants to marry someone who possesses the qualities of his first love, that ORDC, (Original Ride or Die Chick), his mother.
Last weekend we surprised our ORDC. It was a special occasion and a blessing because it was Margie Alexander Hailes 91st birthday and, as you know not everyone gets a chance to celebrate 91 years of living.
She had a ball but asked only one request when I told her she would be the topic of my column this week. “That’s fine just make sure you put a nice picture of me in your paper.” I told her not to worry because she is a perfect example of how “Black Don’t Crack” and how she looks super fine for 91. With her celebrating 91 years and my father making it to 91 years of age they give me hope that I might be around for at least another 30 years.
Please allow me to close with the following story: A little boy came up to his mother in the kitchen one evening while she was fixing supper, and he handed her a piece of paper that he had been writing on. After his mom dried her hands on an apron, she read it, and this is what it said:
For cutting the grass: $5.00 for cleaning up my room this week: $1.00 For going to the store for you: .50 Baby-sitting my kid brother while you went shopping: .25 Taking out the garbage: $1.00 For getting a good report card: $5.00 For cleaning up and raking the yard: $2.00 Total owed: $14.75 Well, his mother looked at him standing there, and the boy could see the memories flashing through her mind. She picked up the pen, turned over the paper he’d written on, and this is what she wrote: “For the nine months I carried you while you grew inside me: No Charge. For all the nights that I’ve sat up with you, doctored and prayed for you: No Charge. For all the trying times, and all the tears that you’ve caused through the years: No Charge. For all the nights that were filled with dread, and for the worries I knew were ahead: No Charge. For the toys, food, clothes, and even wiping your nose: No Charge. When you add it up, Son, the cost of my love is: No Charge.” When the boy finished reading what his mother had written, there were big tears in his eyes, and he looked straight up at his mother and said, “Mom, I sure do love you.” Please allow me a shout out to my mother I love you and wish you many more days, weeks, months and years. Happy Birthday gorgeous!
With each of the seats except one, District 5, having opposition, we believe it is important that our readers have an opportunity to meet the candidates so that you will be able to make an informed decision when voting begins April 30, 2018.
Each of the candidates running for political office in our local elections have been invited to interview with the Courier Eco Latino newspaper. For those candidates who choose to respond to our offer, we will share their conversation in our special issue which will be published April 26, 2018. Until then we implore you to attend the scheduled debates and ask pertinent questions. – Wane A. Hailes, Publisher