Another Birthday Post....
Friday, May 3, 2013
Today is my Mamaw's 83rd birthday. She is, by far, the most extraordinary woman I have ever met. She is the world's best cook, can work any younger person into the ground (me included), can strike up a conversation with just about anyone (and does, regularly), and most of all she is probably closer to Jesus than anyone I know. From the time I was very young, I knew she was just special, and if you've ever talked to her you know that's true. She is loving, but honest. She is kind, but will tell you the truth (even when it hurts.) She's absolutely not afraid to invite people to church (or ask them where they go, or why they don't go to church. =) With four children, 14 grandchildren (10 of us married), 10 great-grandchildren, and other extended family, you'd think someone would slip through the cracks, but she (with the help of Facebook and her poor over-worked cellphone) keeps track of every single one of us. I think she must be psychic or at least have some kind of sixth sense because she seems to know the family news before it even happens (plus always has the DL on her neighbors, friends, strangers at the post office... you get it. She's the Information Superhighway.) If you have a prayer request, she's the person to call, since I'm convinced she has a special line straight to Heaven. Also, she's pretty much the most unselfish person ever... her care of Papaw for so many years was unbelievable, and she'd do it again in a heartbeat. She serves because she wants to. The woman is 83 (!!!) and she will tell me that she's been "out of it" because she's "only" made three hospital visits this week. (To visit the "old" people, one of which she clearly is not.) She gives hospitality a whole new meaning... the number of people that she has fed and housed over the years could attest to that. When she says "Make yourself at home," she means it. Her house has notebooks scattered through each room, full of prayer requests, praises, and just her conversations with the Lord, mostly about those of us fortunate enough to be her family.
God has a plan for my life, and I truly believe that one of the most important and special parts of it was the opportunity to live very close to Mamaw for four years- two in college, two right after we were married. Three of those years were spent with Papaw, too, and helping her with him when I could. As newlyweds, we were at her house every day... watching Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy while eating Mamaw's food. (Who could pass up a setup like that?) I would not trade that time for anything in the world. Being the closest grandchild around, I like to think I'm her favorite (not really, but we are closer than we've ever been.) I have been privileged to watch her closely, spend time with her, and be on the receiving end of her wisdom many times (and the receiving end of her chocolate gravy, which is a whole new level of blessing.) She loves me unconditionally and spoils me and Jonathan (although her intolerance for my shopping habits has been a point of contention now and then. Ha!)
I could talk all day about how much Mamaw has encouraged ME, but let's be honest... if you know her, she has encouraged you too. This is one incredible lady, and I am one lucky girl to call her Mamaw. Happy Birthday, Nina Marie! Your family (and so many others) love you more than you could ever know.
Posted by Ash at 7:15 AM