9.19.1932

This was a special day in my history, 79 years ago. My mama was born in Hillsborough, Alabama, the only daughter of Lester and Verna Ryan. Come to think of it, she may have been born at Decatur General, but I’m not positive. Anyway, I thought it fitting to pay tribute to my sweet mama on this day. After all, I woke up thinking about her, and how very much I miss her. More and more each day, in fact. I lost her 16 years ago, and only 18 months after Daddy died. To this day, I still feel like for all the raising they did on me…..they weren’t finished, and I’ll admit, I harbor a bit of resentment at that. You see, all six of my brothers and sisters were married with families by the time Mama and Daddy passed. But I was not. I was still in college. Away from home, but still under that feathered wing I so wish I could be comforted by at times nowadays. Thinking back to the day we buried her, I vividly recall standing around in a circle with the large gathering of family members who had assembled to say a final, private prayer with the pastor before the public memorial began. We bowed our heads, and the pastor spoke calmly and beautifully about Mama. For a moment, I glanced up and saw my siblings standing in the small group that made up each of their individual families. It was then, I realized I was standing alone. Apparently, I must have passed out, or gone into hysterics and been given a tranquilizer, because I don’t remember much after that. Only that when I went back down to school a few days later, I kept calling Mama’s home number, and nobody was home. Finally one day, I got that dreaded disconnection recording. That was it. I decided then, it was time to move on. My biggest fan was resting with her love, in Heaven, and I had to do her proud.  Still working on that, I guess….

I do wish my girls could have met her. They would have loved her so, and she them. Every time I pull out one of the dresses she made for me, their eyes sparkle, and I tell them what the inspiration was for the particular garment. Each one has a story, of course, whether it be as simple as a “first day of Kindergarten dress”, or a “Miss Maid of Cotton frock”, the histories of all are rich. God really broke the mold when he made Mama. Her talents were beyond comprehension, and she clothed so many of the little ones in the small town of Athens, Alabama, with her gorgeous creations.  I know for a fact, that most of the dresses she made have been preserved and treasured by their owners until this day, and that makes me smile all over my face. I think it would be lovely to gather them all up, and put together a museum exhibit. It could be called “Little House Originals: The works of Betty Romine”. What a marvelous thought!! 

So….HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MAMA….I love you and miss you every second of every day. 

Give it to me straight. I can take it :-)

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