Greetings! Gee, the mail man handed me a handful of birthday cards today, with each one wishing me a happy eightieth birthday! I noticed some were from my family, and I know they know how old I am, but goodness, surely, I’m not eighty-years old!

Greetings! Gee, the mail man handed me a handful of birthday cards today, with each one wishing me a happy eightieth birthday! I noticed some were from my family, and I know they know how old I am, but goodness, surely, I’m not eighty-years old!

Realization of how years vaporize into the wild blue yonder, brought by-gone years to forefront! Dear Lord, have I been like Rip Van Winkle? If so, then, where have I been? Surely, I would have known that time was passing by; but this fast, for the past eighty-years? It seems they’ve evaporated into thin air? How did all those daily twenty-four hours vanish, so quickly? Have I been asleep for eighty-years?

Lord, it can’t be true! My mind can’t grasp that my file cabinet of life has been filed away into thoughts and memories that will soon evaporate into the eons of time. Why, Lord? It seems only a few years ago, that I was playing jacks and jump-rope, red-rover; red rover, and hide-n-go-seek. I know, Lord, that my calendar is wrong! Where in the world did I come up with one dated in the Year of Our Lord, Two-Thousand-Seventeen?

Gee, the date shows it is the end of the day on July 10, 2017, with thoughts taking me back to memories of eighty-years ago. Come travel with me down an old dusty rural road. I will share what my precious mother shared with me, many years ago. She told of how the pains and hardship of the Big Depression had hung around a long time, especially in the rural areas, where money was scarce when I entered into her world!

She shared how my being was created in an unpainted, small frame, shotgun house on Bootleggers Whiskey Lane, in central, rural southern Oklahoma. A few large black-jack trees made shade for the yard and house, which was located about fifty-feet back from the deep rutted, sandy road, running east and west. She said it was very, very hot that day, but it was even hotter in the house as a fire was built in the wood cook-stove, to heat water for bathing the new baby when it arrived.

Mother said with no doctor and no pain medication, her hard and long difficult labor left her so weak, but when she heard my wee little whimper, her exhaustion and difficult labor was forgotten. She noticed I was very small, and blue all over. She said my breathing was very fragile and told her best friend, the mid-wife, to send her husband to the bootlegger’s home for some whiskey.

The mid-wife prepared a small card-board box for my crib, which Mother had gotten for me. It was placed on the open door of the oven. She wrapped me in warmed baby blankets, as mother mixed two drops of whiskey on a teaspoon of sugar, placing it on a small square piece of material. Then, she bunched the material over the sugar-whiskey, wrapping a piece of twine from a cloth flour sack, around the sugar/whiskey sugar-tit!

Mother said she thanked God, as I began to move my tongue and suck on it, like a breast. Hours later, the stimulation was working my entire body and by the next morning, I wasn’t as blue and my body was functioning.

Therefore, I thank God for the inspiration, courage, faith and strength He gave to my precious mother. Her strong religious faith in God, quick thinking for a home-made country incubator, plus numerous prayers, has definitely spilled over into her baby girl’s life.

Today, that baby girl has put on some extra pounds since lupus and rheumatoid arthritis has slowed down her activities, but is an over-weight 80-year “young” great grandmother! We serve a GREAT and MIGHTY GOD!!

Now, you have my life story and many tid-bits of my life, all of which I have enjoyed to share with you. But, since I have been writing for newspapers for forty-two-years, plus writing my programs for six-years for my television program, my grandchildren are wanting me to stop, and write my life story.

Of course, I told them, that if they would get copies of all that I had written, they would know everything about me, and I wouldn’t have to write my life story! But, with sadness, I cease all of my columns and articles, and will try to focus on my life! That may be a tad-bit difficult, ‘cause my memory bank was full many years ago, over-flowing into the pages and eons of time.

I close with my prayer of thanksgiving for the opportunity to enter into your life. It is with a bit of sadness to bid you farewell, but my steps are getting slower and more painful. Lupus has increased its painful activity, along with ole mean rheumatoid arthritis, both of which dims my creative writing.

In closing, may God be with each of you and bless you always. Ephesians 3:17 – “That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love.”

(It was called a “shotgun” house, because one could stand in the front door and shoot the shotgun straight through the back door.”)