The Greatest Role
Mama, Mother, Mom, Mam, Meri, Maman, Madre, Uma, Mana, Momma….. whatever mothers are called, they’re the glue that holds everyone in a family together, whether they do it quietly or with a strong presence. I’m so very fortunate to have my mother, Fran, whom I call Mama, here close to me. She’s almost 93, and her face still lights up when my sister and our families, especially our children and grand’s, walk in the room. Although she has some age-related limitations, she’s remarkable and has maintained her quick wit and intense love for her family. The recognition for women of her generation (the Greatest Generation) was often understated due to the attention focusing on the men who served in World War II. It wasn’t until recent years that I learned more about her early years and I admire her so much.
My mama left her small town North Carolina farm world at age 19 and went to Washington, DC to work for the FBI and later the Federal Reserve during and after the war. She lived with some other girls, and had a ball! I love hearing her stories, and realize how much courage it took to leave her world at a young age, in a time that was uncertain, to go live hundreds of miles away. But she did, flourished, and met my dad there after the war. She’s always been fun-loving, involved in community and church, and put her family first and foremost before anything else. That certainly hasn’t changed, although our roles have shifted somewhat. I’m now the one making sure she has what she needs, taking care of and worrying about her. But when I walk in the room, and her face lights up like a bright light, I know I’m home and I wouldn’t trade that for anything in the world.
This Mother’s Day, we will celebrate with our local extended family, who love her as well. We’ll talk, laugh, cry and miss those in our family and framily who aren’t with us, but we’ll celebrate and cherish every minute together. I will also be thinking of my friends (both known and unknown) who won’t have their mothers with them, and saying prayers for all.
The greatest “job” I’ve ever had is to be a mother to my son, Chris, and now a “Mimi” to my sweet granddaughter Ellsley. Mama loves this “salad”, which was a favorite of Chris’ when he was young. So, I’m going to make this for Mama, think about Chris and smile, and share the recipe with you.
Chris’ Cherry Salad
- 1 can Cherry Pie Filling
- 1 can sweetened condensed milk (such as Eagle Brand)
- 1 can crushed pineapple, drained
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- 1 container Cool Whip
Mix all ingredients. Mama says it’s important to put this in a beautiful crystal bowl, so I always do. Refrigerate at least 4 hours, and enjoy.
Until next time, be kinder than necessary. Remember that being a family means you will love and be loved all your life, no matter what.