This blog is a tribute to my mother; Earnestine Anderson, my role model, who went home to be with our Lord on December 4, 2017 … 1929 – 2017
After leaving the repast, my husband and I brought our food home to eat. By 6 p.m., I was in the bed. I felt exhausted, a numb like feeling, yet I wasn’t sad. I awakened in the 11 p.m. hour to sit on the side of the bed, listening to the melody of my husband’s snore.
Thanking God and thinking …
I thought of all the fond memories of growing up, the times when Momma would let me lay down on the couch with her. She would lay on her side with her legs folded back. That’s where I would curl up, in the bend of her knees and that would be the best sleep.
The week of her passing, one of my younger sisters brought that up & I thought to myself, wow I thought Momma did that just for me. Now I see how Momma made all of her children feel special. I thank God for giving her that part (and every part) of Him to give to us.
Momma was always there when I needed someone to talk to. I enjoyed just being with her. Instead of talking over the phone, I would rather go over to Momma’s house and if nothing else, than to smile at each other. I so enjoyed listening to her talk about her childhood and watching her cook dinner from scratch, with no measuring cups or spoons nor blender (we have such a easier life, maybe too easy. We can easily miss our moment to push harder to accomplish things that’s important). She would pour from the containers into the bowl or put a pinch of this or that in the bowl, always the right amount. It was amazing, what she would make in a short length of time and with ease (even with all the whipping). Oh, and her homemade biscuits & salmon croquettes were like heaven. And if you thought you didn’t like liver that would quickly change after tasting her liver & onions with gravy poured over rice or mash potatoes. I must not forget about her ox tail stew, homemade cornbread and her sweet potato pies. Anything Momma cooked was made with love and I could always taste that love. (God is love, taste & see that the Lord, He is good.)
Reminiscing about how she took care of us when we were not feeling well. The cold remedies like castor and/or cod liver oil and Vicks vapor rub. I remember my Pastor talked about a home mixture called Haticall (unsure on the spelling, but I believe this is the pronunciation) ours was called Acidfidi (spelling likewise). I am not sure if these two remedies were for the same symptoms or not. I thank Jesus for His Precious Blood, for by His Stripes we are healed.
As I mentioned in the blog for Daddy (https://www.trinityflag.com/?p=1699), I had the pleasure of interviewing my parents for a social work assignment at school. The title was My Parents: Expressions of Resistance, Resilience and Strengths.
Here are some excerpts about my Mother …
This interview was done to get an understanding on how and why my parents said and did certain things. I’ve learned that they had been conditioned (just like everyone) by their family, the environment, the society, their experiences and their beliefs. Momma was sweet, but strict at times. As a result, we are all a reflection of the life we are influenced by.
When I got this assignment, I thought what could possibly be a better way to express resistance, resilience, and strengths other than my parents? Their continuous struggle (now I recognize it as spiritual warfare) through life has impacted, but also instilled in me the same will of determination (to not give up and fight the good fight of faith). I am so thankful to God and happy that He chose them to be my parents.
My parents (in this blog, emphasis on Momma) are African Americans who were born in the times of segregation, crop sharing and migration. As I listened to them in my interview, I felt as if I were there.
My mother was born in 1929 in Mississippi. She would have been 89 in July 2018. I may not remember all of my life growing up, but I do remember Momma’s. She was always doing something for someone. There was almost always someone living with us. She enjoyed gardening and planting flowers. She organized and cooked for the annual block party for all the kids on the block (of course, there were others from surrounding blocks too :)), before they returned back to school in September. She enjoyed doing this and did it for well over ten years. She also enjoyed Christmas; we always had a tree growing up, with all the lights and presents under it. As we had our own families, she would even have all of her grand and great grandbabies over to spend the Christmas Eve at her house.
During my interview, she began her life story by talking about her mother. Momma started really working around the house at nine years old. The rest of the family was in the fields, which was my granddaddy, her four brothers and two sisters. Momma mentioned that the first food she cooked was homemade biscuits. Grandmomma was sick on that day, so she said, “Momma, if you tell me how to make them, I will bake you some biscuits.” After then by the age of 13, she cooked everything. She also mentioned when the “friendly sisters (nuns)” came by to pick up the basket for church, she would have made everything, except the pie crust (grandmomma made them). She made chicken and dressing, potato salad and cakes.
At the age of 14, she started going to the fields to help pick cotton. She would get up at 4:30 a.m. to milk the cow. She would be half asleep, sitting under the cow, but she never spilled a drop. She had to strain the milk and then had to put the cow in one place and the calf in another for grazing. She had to fix the beds, which didn’t really have mattresses; they were a pile of cotton that she had to mold into a bed under the sheet. All of this needed to be done so she can be ready to go to the fields with the other family members. She mentioned how she and grandmomma would do a lot of things together. They would even go to the woods to cut trees to load up for a rainy day. As Momma was telling me her story, I thought of her as being a Cinderella.
While in the fields, she would have to leave by 11:30 a.m., if grandmomma was sick, in order to cook and wash clothes. Momma mentioned how she had to boil water and wash the clothes on the scrub board (I remember a scrub board we had in our house, when I was younger). She then hung them up to dry outside.
Momma attended school five or six months out of the year. She graduated from the 8th grade, so she was able to read and write.
Momma was 23 years old when she married Daddy. Grandmomma made her a flowery silk dress and they got married at the courthouse and had a big wedding reception. It was good to see how they could still enjoy each other as they shared their good and bad memories with me.
Here is her professional work experience, which started after marriage. My parents left Mississippi in the 1950’s in search of employment, they first went to Florida. She drove and sometimes rode behind a tractor, as they picked and planted tomatoes and beans. My parents then moved from Florida to Batavia, New York and then back to Mississippi for a short time. This is when I was born :).
In October of 1957, we were on our way to Chicago, IL. My mother’s brother sent money for traveling and he also helped them find an apartment and a job. In Chicago, she worked as a housekeeper at hotels downtown and then later became a private housekeeper and nanny.
All of us kids attended Chicago Public Schools. Even though we had a big family, we were happy, we were kept fed and clothed. We always had chores, we kept the apartment cleaned, inside and outside. Momma would always say, “No one can say that y’all tearing up their place :)” We lived in a couple apartments until my parents purchased a building in the 70’s. Later my parents was blessed to purchase a two flat building with a vacant lot between these two buildings.
My parents were in the midst of segregation and migration. They worked in minimum wage jobs all their lives, but they worked hard enough to accomplish what we have today. That’s why I know that their lives and legacy express resistance (hard life), resilience (being able to overcome obstacles in life), and strengths (having the will to succeed). I am so thankful to God for blessing me with great parents.
My parents married on July 3, 1952, which made 63 years (they renewed the vows in 2005 for the 50th wedding anniversary, it was so sweet). They had 11 children, 18+ grandchildren, 27+ great grandchildren and 2 great great grandchildren.
My parents are the attributes of “Resistance, Resilience and Strengths,” by persevering and not giving up, even in the face of adversity.
I love my parents and we shall see each other again !!!
Romans 10:9 King James Version (KJV), That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
Ephesians 6:12 Amplified Bible (AMP), For we are not wrestling with flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the despotisms, against the powers, against [the master spirits who are] the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spirit forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) sphere.
1 Timothy 6:12 New King James Version (NKJV), Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.
Philippians 4:13 King James Version (KJV), I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
2 Corinthians 5:8 King James Version (KJV), We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.
John 3:16 King James Version (KJV), For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
2 Corinthians 4:18 King James Version (KJV), While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.
Ephesians 1:3-5 King James Version (KJV), Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
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