Thursday, January 12, 2006

Happy Birthday to Arcadia "Grace" Woods Alexander, My Mom

January 12, 1932 - August 28, 1994

Today is my mom's 74th birthday and instead of celebrating in the usual birthday way, I celebreated it by reflecting on some of the wisdom my mom passed on down to me and my siblings. It was a day of reflection because my mom is no longer here with us. She passed away suddenly on Sunday, August 28, 1994. So, here's to you mom:

1. My mom constantly told her girls, "NEVER, EVER let women friends hang in our homes. If you do, she said, before you know it they'll be in and you'll be out." I've seen it happen a time too many to know mom was on target with this advice.

2. Whenever she didn't like how we acted with her or my siblings, she'd say, "Y'all are gonna miss me when I'm gone. Y'all are gonna be searching for me in the daytime with a flashlight." Boy how right she was there. I think if I owned stock in a battery company, I'd be rich because my flashlight is contantly on, searching for her.

3. "Some secrets you take to your grave." Mom didn't believe in kissing and telling. She said, "If you're gonna be woman or man enough to do it, then be woman or man enough and keep your mouth shut." I've seen too many times when the truth got someone mamed for life or killed.

4. "If you're gonna do something, you don't need company to do it with. Your so-called friend will turn on you in a New York minute and will tell all your secrets in a hot second." I've often seen this unfold too many times as well.

5. I always smile at this one. Mom said, "Never let a man know everything you got (money). Always, always keep a stash for hard times. You never know when you need that stash to make a fresh start."

These are just a few of the wise things my mom passed down to me under the guise of 'advice'. I don't know about you, but I considered my mom to be a very wise woman then, as I still do today as she is still guiding me in the decisions I make. She may not be here physically, but she is ever so present in my heart and if I listen closely, I hear her speaking to me.

I think my mom would be proud of the accomplishments I've made, particularly with my writing. She'd be equally proud that I'll be passing down all of her wisdom to my soon-to-be 7-year-old daughter, Alexis.

Happy 74th Birthday momma. I miss you like crazy!

Your loving daughter, Vanessa

P. S. The above pic is of my dad, my mom and one of my brother's Dwight for his graduation.


Diamond said...

Vee Jay,

This is very touching. I especially appreciated the wisdom that she had for all of you. Thanks for sharing.


MsJayy said...

I love it! This is something I truly miss about my Grandma, those words of wisdom. This is a tradition we truly need to continue for our kids. Stay blessed Sis!