It’s hard to believe but my mom has been gone for almost 8 years. Last week she would have celebrated her 64th birthday…in celebration of her, here’s a few life lesson I learned, more so caught, from my Mother, Sylvia Diane Branch….
-Work hard, take care of your responsibilities. Being a single parent, there was never a time when my mom didn’t work. The last twenty years of her life she worked in a nursing home as a nursing/respiratory assistant. Most days she went in at 630am and didn’t get off until 1030pm. She didn’t ask anyone for anything, including our dad, she wasn’t on any public assistance. She said we were her children and it was her job to take care of us and that she did.
-Complaining Doesn’t Change People or Circumstances. My mom wasn’t a complainer. She just did what needed to be done. She never spoke bad about my dad. She just picked up the slack without hesitation. Even when she was diagnosed with cancer, she kept her game face on.
-Don’t Allow People’s Emotions Affect Your Perspective. I remember going to see my mom in the hospital after she was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer, I started crying when I seen her…she looked so frail in her hospital gown. She looked me square in the eyes and said “Don’t come in here with all that crying, I’m alright. I’m going to be just fine.”
-Love Acts. Four years before my mom died her younger sister and best friend was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer that had spread to her lymph nodes and organs. My Aunt Virginia (my oldest daughters namesake) was given 2 weeks to live. My Mom took an immediate leave of absence and took care of her sister. She bathed her, fed her, changed her, combed her hair…everything. When my Aunt passed I watched my mother bathe and dress her sister for the last time while she wept uncontrollably…in that moment I seen how strong love was.
-Do What’s Right Even When Doing The Opposite is Justified. When my dad died he didn’t have life insurance. My husband and I were going to take out a small loan to pay for his funeral. My Mom said no and paid for his funeral herself. She didn’t have to do this and it was completely unexpected bc my Dad and her had a horrible history and he wasn’t the best father either. She said she did it bc that was still my Dad and I loved him.
Although I wish my Mom was here to see my family and be MawMaw, as my oldest daughter called her, I’m glad that I can now see her life through the eyes of grace and appreciate the lessons that I learned from simply watching her live…thanks Mama❤️❤️❤️