Happy Birthday Mom!

Today my mother would have been 92 year old.  She passed away in 2013.  She was born in Mt. Vernon, Illinois and had ten siblings.  Five were from her mom and dad and five were from her mother and her first husband.  One of my mothers sisters, Rosebud, died in infancy…and mom spoke of her lovingly and I thought that she knew her, when in reality she had passed away before mom was born.  It seemed that mom felt Rosebud’s presence with her…

doll with grey eyes and brown hair

Photo by James Sutton on Pexels.com

My mother’s family was very poor and her father was an alcoholic.  She relished in telling me that although the Askew family was poor they always had enough to eat…not like the Quinns who had to forage in the woods for persimmons for their supper.  When she became 16 she quit high school to go to work in the local shoe factory.  She earned $16 per week.  Her sister, Wanda, got her on at the factory.  She was very fond of Wanda!  

Neva June taught me to be fiercely independent!  She marched to the tune of her own drummer…and so do I…  

hands music sound black and white

Photo by Stephen Niemeier on Pexels.com

If mom knew that you were in need…she would help you.  She regularly gave money to family and friends that needed a helping hand.  If you had been marginalized…you were mom’s friend.  Few things made her happier than to befriended a person who had no friends!  During the last 30 years of her life she had resources…but she purchased her clothes at the second hand store.  She rejoiced in a 50 cent sweater or a $1 suit.  From Thanksgiving forward to Christmas…mom was preparing for the holiday.  We traveled to see mom and my step-father, Earl, a couple of times per month…and some times more often.  However, during the time between turkey day and Santa Claus we were instructed not to come…because she would need every available minute to prepare for the feast!  When Aaron and Jonathon came along…they were excited to see grandma Neva Junes’s Christmas tree and all the festive decorations!  MJ and I knew that they were in for a surprise…when we entered their Eldorado country home…they ran through the house and exclaimed, ‘Grandma…Grandma…where is your Christmas tree!’  Forthwith grandmas showed her grandsons her miniature two foot Christmas tree on top of an occasional table…  My childhood Laughing Santa…had long since disappeared…and the only other decorations was those that you brought with you…in your heart…

Mom liked to dance.  She liked to visit the Honky Tonks and drink slo-gin fizzes.  She was full of life and looked like a movie star!  Her family were all church goers…but her.  After mom and dad separated and soon divorced she would tell me that she and I needed to start going to church.  For the last 43 years of her life she was a christian.  

Mom had compassion for those who were hurting or marginalized or outcast.  She had a fiery temper…although she never aimed it at me…  She was one of the most adept  readers of people that I have seen.  She could identify a bunch of malarkey or a hidden agenda…immeadately!  She thought for herself.  She steered her own course.  She was a flash of brilliance in a dull drab world!

3 responses

  1. Happy birthday to your mom a little late, she sounded like a delightful woman! I’m sure she’s resting well now. She sounded like she lived a full life. Have a blessed day xoxo

    1. Thank you, my friend!

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