"A Special Person"
Her name is Marie and she is my mother. Marie is a very warm and caring soul. She is always there for her family, freely giving us love and support. She bore six children but when I came along she willingly embraced me as her own and I became number seven. I am her first grandchild, she has cared for me from birth, and this is why I call her Mom.
Marie was born in the thirty's to very poor and uneducated parents. Other children made fun of her as a child because of the clothes she wore and the work her parents did following the harvests and picking fruit. Mom said people labeled them "Dust bowl Okie's", "Fruit Tramps", and "poor white trash." She still remembers the pain. She vowed that would never happen to her children! She wanted them to have all the advantages she never had and this wish became the driving force in her life.
Marie was married at 15 but the marriage did not work out. She had unknowingly married a very troubled man, and for the safety and well-being of her family, she was forced to end the marriage, and face the world alone with her small brethren. This was in 1961 and she was 27 years old. The world was a different place in 1961. These were not easy times for women, especially ones with 6 children to support. Mom never seemed to recognize this. She always said, "It's a good thing no one told me I couldn't do this or I might have got discouraged." She got her first job and went to work determined to care for her family. It was the beginning of a lifetime of self-sacrifice and hard work. Sometimes she had to work...