If ever there was a grandmother, I had one. And this grandmother of mine had a way with words like no other. Her expressions left people scratching their heads but made perfect sense to me. They were like an enigma, a carefully wrapped gift – with incredible wisdom tucked down deep inside.
Grandmother was a motivational speaker in a time when only loud, brash preachers got the platform at country tent revivals. So she preached her message of positivity whenever and wherever she could. While other “proper Southern” women were busy bartering homemade and canned goods, ironing and the like during the Depression, she went door to door selling insurance and bartered all that “woman’s work” out and paid for the rest with her earnings.
My very young parents and I lived with my grandparents for some time on their farm. That time spent together forged a bond so strong that no Herculean effort could’ve broken. Even after my family moved out, I continued to spend time with her. There was no other person on earth I would’ve rather been with than my grandmother, Jennie Mae.
Grandmother continually encouraged me as if she saw something inside of me that I didn’t see myself. “Caint never could” – translation, “if you think you can’t, you’re right.” “That possum’s on the stump” – translation “the time is now, do what you gotta do.” “I’ll explain it for you but I can’t understand it for you” – meaning “you know what to do, now figure it out for yourself” and “If wishes were horses then beggars would ride” – translation “it’s not enough to just wish something would happen.”
Grandmother cheered me on as I tackled my fear of speech class, drama, speech tournaments, debate class, school newspaper, pep squad, etc… I always knew she was proud but I always knew she expected more… more because she believed I could do it.
So here I am again…at this stage of life…putting myself out there once again, paying no attention to the gossips, critics and the naysayers. Why? Because dreams don’t have age limits or time limits or any limits at all – especially to the dreamer.
Because in the end, The big road leads into town! (translation - don’t hide yourself or your dream. Go for it because gettin’ to town is your destiny!)