Photo taken on my 35th B-Day!
Today I give honor to four of the most influential women in my life and they are as follows:
My Mother (Carolyn Barbee)
My Late Maternal Grandmother (Annie B. White)
My Paternal Grandmother (Moma Dorothy Gillispie)
My Late Great Grandmother (Margaret Johnson)
My mother was my first and most important teacher. She taught me how to be a lady, how to take care of a home and how to be a strong woman.
As I watched my mother growing up as a young girl, I noticed my mother sacrificed a lot for her 3 children. She lost many jobs because she was taking care of a sick child and She even worked part-time to stay home with my son, that I gave birth to when I was in high school.
She was a un-selfish mother that loved her children very much and taught me to be loving to my own kids. My mother has always been my #1 cheerleader, she always tells me how proud she is of me and we can talk about anything. So, Today…Moma I honor you for being the Most Influential Woman in my Life!
My Maternal Grandmother
As I write this blog post, I am in tears, because I miss my grandmother so much. She was my second mother, of whom I spent a lot of time with. In fact, I moved with my grandmother at the age of fourteen. My grandmother always told me how much she loved me. Many people say that I act and look like her. She also was a strong woman. She raised 8 children (4 boys and 4 girls). Moreover, she was a great grandmother to her grandchildren and many of us called her, “Moma.”
My grandmother (Annie White) inspired my gift of writing and a love for magazines. I remember my grandmother had a office in her home and I used to write on all of her paper and read all of her magazines. She was very creative. When I was a teenager, she bought a home in North St. Louis. The house had no walls, electricity or plumbing. I asked her, ‘Moma, how are we going to live in this house?” She said, she is going to put it together one paycheck at a time.
And that is what she did with the help of her brother, my uncles and many other family members. Then she started a flower/purse shop in the basement of the home. Moreover, before she passed away, she began to care for elderly/disabled people out of her home and had a vision to turn the home into a daycare.
The home is now a daycare and my Aunt is living in the home andcurrently operates a licesned daycare from the home. Moma…Today I honor you for being a Influential woman in my life and the life of others!
My Paternal Grandmother
My paternal grandmother (Dorothy Gillispie) was an business owner and a hardworking woman. When I was a young girl, my grandmother owned a licquor store. My sister and I would love to go hang out at her store. We loved to go to eat the candy and watch television in the back of her store. It was something for me to see her run her business and take care of her family. She raised 10 children and it is still important to her that her family get together for the holidays. In fact, my grandmother is near 80 years of age and she still works.
My grandmother has inspired me not to retire,but to make a shift in what I love to do and keep going. Moma Dorothy, I honor you today for being a Influential Woman in my Life!
My Great Grand Mother (we called ” Big Moma”)
My Great Grandmother (Margaret Johson) was only in my life for about 12 years. She passed away when I was 12, but what I remember most about her was that look of wisdom on her face. She was a woman of God. She studied the word of God and taught it to her children and grandchildren. In fact, if we were to lie, cheat or still, you were required to write it down hundreds of times, I will not steal, I will not lie and so forth. As, a young girl my mother used to force me to go over her house and I would cry, because she looked so serious all the time and it used to scare me (laughing). But, when my great grandmother would take me to her craft room in the basement of her apartment, I would forget about wanting to go home. I learned how to make a necklace with metal soda pop lids and how to work with ceramics. She was very creative with her hands and when you were around her, you will either get the word of God or learn something new.
Big Moma…. I miss you and I honor you today for being one of the most inluential Women in my life!
I stand on the shoulders of these great women and it has taught me to live a life that can be modeled by my daughter, my grandchildren and my great grandchildren. Because, what I do has an impact on the next generations!
Who are the most influential Women in your life?