Celebrating this one, Leola White Brailsford, who would have turned 80 today. I feel closer than ever to her as I understand her better and better, by and by—piecing together a life through memories of my siblings and others, through living my own life… through connecting with her spirit.
What I have come to appreciate over the years since her transition 24 years ago is her generosity—we were raised to give—and her loving. She touched so many! More than one cousin is convinced that they were her favorite. The thing is, she didn’t have favorites, which I’ve always considered to be the ultimate sign of a good mother.
I find myself uttering her sayings. Lately, certain circumstances have prompted me to make the observation "give them an inch and they’ll take a mile." (I won’t reveal my favorite expression as I’ve reserved it for the title of a short story collection, or perhaps a memoir.) I remember frequently asking as a child, "So WHAT does that mean?!" She often spoken in proverbs and aphorisms, conjuring all kinds of colorful mages in my head. It's no wonder I became a writer.
She was magical—and remains so. The very second I finished drafting this post, a sweet voice began to fill the air. It is Amandla singing a song she wrote for The Hate U Give soundtrack and is streaming from a Spotify playlist on my iphone.
I thank you for the blessing of your love
You've given me the strength to rise above...
You will be there.
You'll always be there...
You’ll always be a part of me...
INSTAGRAM/ FACEBOOK POST 7/17/21
I like to make stuff...and think about stuff.