My Family Affair

Keitt|Sapp|Shumake|McRae|McMillian|Clark|Ryal - All from Georgia

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“Over the course of the millennia, all these ancestors in your tree, generation upon generation, have come down to this moment in time—to give birth to you. There has never been, nor will ever be, another like you. You have been given a tremendous responsibility. You carry the hopes and dreams of all those who have gone before. Hopes and dreams for a better world. What will you do with your time on this Earth? How will you contribute to the ongoing story of humankind?” ~ Laurence Overmire

Happy 70th Birthday MOM

Posted by TonyaKeittKalule

Betty Ryals Keitt "My Momma"
Today is my mother's 70th birthday.  I do realize just how blessed I am to still have her in my life.  No I wasn't smart enough or mature enough to realize the treasure I had for many years, but am glad that I finally got it.  Yes we went through the many years of the 'Mother-Daughter' Dynamics, and we made it through.  I never thought that would happen.  But as my grandmother always said, 'just keep living'.

As I raised my own daughter I felt that I was going to be different from my own mother, and it worked for awhile. By the time my daughter was a teenager, I started to really  understand what it took to be a real mother.  Oh yeah, those first 12-14 years were easy, but here comes the friends and the attitudes.  That is when I really knew what it meant to be one step ahead of a teenager. 

I started to appreciate the patience that my mother had when I would half-wash the dishes when I was a teenager. The strength it took to keep from bashing me in the head when I looked her right in the eye and told her a bold face lie and yes mothers know when you are lying, even if the story you are telling is logical and believable for someone else. 

It is about this time, when I was raising my own teenager daughter, that I started to periodically call my mother and apologize for what she had to put up with when I was a teenager.  I would ask her how did she stand me, and she would just laugh.

Now, neither I nor my daughter were bad kids, but typical teenagers that thought our parents were born yesterday and we were definitely smarter than they were.

It was not until I got married that I started to understand my mother as a woman, and not just 'my mother'.  That was definitely an enlightening time, and when our relationship really started to change.

Then I moved to California where I met so many people that were astonished that I still had both of my parents and that they were healthy and of sound mind.   At first I though that it was  hilarious when people would ask me if my parents were still of sound mind.   The more that I encountered this question along with the sadness in the faces of those who asked, I started to realized that I was extremely blessed to have both of my parents in good health and of sound mind. So many of the people that I had come in contact with had lost their parents many years ago, and wished that they were still with them.  I do understand that sadness to be for probably two reasons.  First of all they merely wish that their parents were still living and healthy, but what I believe is harder, is that they lost their parents before they themselves were really smart enough and mature enough to really appreciate them.

 I know that I have been divinely favored when Betty Ryals  was chosen to be My Mother.

I am so grateful that she is still here as I became smart enough and mature enough to  honor and cherish her, and to give my mother her flowers while she is living. 

Dear Mom, I said a prayer for you 
to thank the Lord above
For Blessing me with a lifetime
of your tenderhearted love.

I thanked God for the caring
you've shown me through the years.
For the closeness we've enjoyed
in time of laughter and of tears

And so, I thank you from the heart
for all you've done for me
and I thank the Lord for giving me
the best mother there could be.


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