Thursday, May 13, 2021

Mothers and Grandmothers (Frances & Joan)

Happy Belated Mothers' Day to all of you; to the mothers, grandmothers, godmothers, foster mothers, and unofficial mothers. Today's stories celebrate the mothers of Best Day, traditional and otherwise:

Frances Bryce


A Parent’s Recollection

I‘m not a grandmother, biological that is. I have had the honor of being like a grandparent to my best friend’s grandchildren and enjoyed the many stories of other grandparents. I am reminded of stories from my children. My daughter was between 3 and 4 years, I believe, when she responded to her father when she was reminded of a behavior that was not acceptable and was sent to her room which was upstairs. As she went up the stairs, she called him “Meanie, Meanie Mustache.”
She was upset one evening when she asked her father to get her some ice cream when she heard the bell tinkling from not far away. As usual he was reading, because he was a prolific reader, and he said “Okay” but he did not put the book down in time to get outside before the truck arrived and passed. He came back and said that he had missed the truck. So, she said, “What kind of father are you”. He pivoted, got the keys, and got into the car. He returned to have ice cream for all. Again, a great father that only took ice cream to solve.
The most memorable event happened when she had her response while we were shopping, and mostly window-shopping, and I saw in the window, as she did, furs from animal skin. And I said, “Oh don’t they look pretty?” And she said, “They only look great on the animals.” I never bought a fur coat of any animal and of course I have never forgotten that moment. And later we had a conversation about that when she said “Mom you could have really bought a fur coat later because they now use minks and so forth.” But I had no desire to get a fur coat after that stand.
One day my son and I were in the car and the radio was on and somehow the conversation came up about slavery and he wanted to know what was slavery. And so, I told him. Among the things I said, there were people, my great grandparents who were sold into slavery, and they were like purchasing a chair or a bed. And he said, “How can people be sold? They are priceless.” I never forgot that statement.
Later he used words, when he was very young, he knew that equated to similar words that he knew and one of the words was “elbow foot,” which he was trying to tell me that something was wrong with his ankle. And the next thing was a “fingernail toe,” as a toenail. I recall these very early periods when he wanted me to know what he wished to express and didn’t have all of the words and understanding of it.
He always had a protective sense of fairness when he saw kids his age being treated unfairly. He came to their rescue. I sometimes share with grandparents a parent’s recollection and still enjoy all the good tales that the grandparents tell me.

Joan Bunting


A Grateful Daughter

I have two sons and four daughters. I love each and everyone of them equally. My daughters and I are very close only because we’re all females, we hung out a lot together. We shopped together, talked about a lot of things, sometimes told our personal secrets.

But you know, no matter how close siblings are, they all have their own different personalities.

My daughter, Joanne, whom is next to my oldest daughter Rose is the one who was always willing to take chances. Sometimes scary, or in some instances, dangerous. 

For example, one day, Joanne and I were on our way home, walking down South Street. As we had just walked over the bridge, a car stops at the red light. As we approached the corner, the young man in the car offered us a ride. Also in the car was a young child about two and a half years old. 

My daughter Joanne says, “Come on mom, let’s get in.” I said, “Girl, we’re not getting in that man’s car. We don’t know him.” Her reply was, “It’ll be okay, he won’t try anything because he has that little child in the car.”

Well, I had to explain to her that the child was a decoy and of course, we did not get in. I’m so glad and I thank God that I was with her that day. She probably would have gotten in that car, and I may not have ever seen her again.

Joanne thanks me even today for not allowing her to go to Lee Lee’s house to those suppose parties she gave every week.

She would ask me every weekend if she could go and I’d tell her no because she knew what kind of parties they were.

You know, the sex, the drinking, and the drugs, and the smoking of pot. One of the neighborhood boys overdosed and died.

These party goers were in their teens, I’m just guessing, but I believe from fourteen to sixteen years of age.

Not only is Joanne grateful, that I didn’t allow her to attend those parties but, I’m also grateful that she obeyed me.

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And don't forget to maintain contact with the older buds in your life. If you can't be there in person, please call them, email them, or message them on social media. And if they're using teleconferencing or remote events for the first time, give them a call and help them set things up. Check in on them to see how well they're getting used to these programs. Buy them a computer or an internet package if they don't have one of their own. It's a human right, after all.

Curated by Caitlin Cieri