I would like to acknowledge a few of them. First being my Aunts, Kathy and Angie. Both played a very significant part in my life as a child. My Aunt Kathy, always singing a song about the Lord. I used to be amazed by the way she could quote scripture from the Bible. I love to hear her sing. I remember many times she would visit my Granny and Papa, and we'd find ourselves around the old piano singing hymns. One that I will never forget is, "Thank you for the valley". I couldn't have been more then seven or eight years old, and I would sing with all my heart. Probably way off key, but it didn't matter we were having fun! My cousin Karen would be playing the piano, and the rest of us singing. Aunt Kathy has always been a very modest person, but trust me when I tell you she knows how to get all dolled up and have a good time. I'll never forget the night she wore her purple dress, and funky colored shoes to my brothers birthday party. She was the life of the party that night. She has influenced my life more then she probably knows. I pray for her often, and pray that God blesses her for all she has done for me and others.
My Aunt Angie, unique is the best way to describe her. I'm so much like her, in too many ways! My mother swears sometimes that she carried her sisters baby. Thoughts I have, things I say, and my carefree, whatever attitude reminds my mom of Aunt Angie. She's always been the one to make any situation a fun one. When we were very young, I remember her and my mom taking us to a Christmas tree farm. It was down a long dirt road and she was fishtailing the truck just to make us laugh. She was always buying me pretty little outfits, shoes, she took me for my first perm, and in a way she did treat me as the little girl she would never have. She's a nurse, and is wonderful at what she does. When I was little she would always say, "Jenny, I just know you'll grow up to be a nurse." Funny thing is, I hate to be called Jenny but there are certain people (Aunt Angie, Granny, and my cousin Karen), that call me that and it doesn't bother me one bit. Strange, huh? Aunt Angie has a very compassionate, loving, humbled spirit. She will go above and beyond to help someone in need. You can always count on her to be there in trying times. So many times she has listened to my troubles, offered advice, or wiped my tears. She truly does love me as one of her own, and I can't thank her enough for that. One of my fondest memories of her, that she still does, is if you hold her hand she always squeezes it. That's just one of the little things I'll always relate to her.
My great Granny Hatcher, what a dear woman. I don't have to many memories of her, she passed when I was around 13. What I remember and admire about her was her hospitality. She made anyone and everyone feel welcome in her home. Although it wasn't much, it was home to her. She raised eleven children in their small home. Cooked endless home cooked meals and would feed anyone that stopped by. I remember sitting in her kitchen eating desserts. On the front porch, watching the traffic go by, and listening to the adults talk. Granny had a love for children. She loved young babies, and the chunkier the better. As a mother now, I don't know how she raised eleven children (nine boys, two girls). I can only imagine the patience she must have had, the prayers she must have said, and the love she had for each one. Granny loved to collect baby dolls, and I will never forget playing with them and always wishing I could take them home. I wish I could have know her better. If she were here now, I would love to just sit and talk to her.
My great Aunt Rose, was a woman of faith. She was very obedient to God's will for her life. She always wanted children, but it was not in God's plan for her to be a mother. She always enjoyed having us over to her home for pool parties. She had the coolest pool which over looked the creek. She didn't mind if you tracked water in the house, she just enjoyed having children in her home. Aunt Rose was diagnosed with liver cancer before turning fifty. God took her home in June 1995. Her battle with cancer was the first I remember witnessing. She fought hard, but even in her last days she was still a witness for the Lord. I remember visiting her often while she was sick. I didn't understand it then, but I understand now how sick she was. I miss her laugh, and her smile. I can't help but wonder the reason she was never a mother. God knew the plan for her life. Miss you Aunt Rose!!
Then there are ladies that I went to church with. Mrs. Gay, my kindergarten teacher for Sunday School. She taught me so many songs about Jesus, and I'll never forget her leading our class on stage so many Sundays, to sing before the church. Mrs. Patsy, oh so funny, yet serious. She was the youth leader that I went to camp with for the first time. She has a heart for young people, and she did her very best to put up with a bunch of out of control, hormone raging, smart mouth teenagers!! God bless her sweet soul! Mrs. Patsy was there for any of us, and regardless of the time or day we knew we could count on her. She still attends the church I've been going to, and it's such a blessing to see her. Then there is Mrs. Cheryl. I don't even know where to begin with her. She posted on her Facebook this morning, "Lord, make me a blessing to someone today." Even to this day, she is a blessing to me. I responded to her post and told her just that. She is a blessing. I thank her for her dedication to her young teenage girls at our church. I'm thankful that when our current G.A leader had to step down, she was there to fill the spot. God could not have chosen a better role model for teenage girls. She loves the Lord with all her heart. Mrs. Cheryl lost her daughter when she was thirteen. I remember her being sad, but the days that I saw her with a smile, and unbelievable joy out weighed the days of sorrow. She still has that cheerful spirit today. I know that only God can offer her that peace and joy. I admire her for her strength. Mrs. Cheryl, may God truly bless you for all that you have done for our church, our community, and the others that you have come in contact with. You are a light, that the world needs more of!!
There is one other lady I would like to mention and that is my friend Jill. Jill has been more then just a friend to me over the years. She has been a private-I with me (((HA HA... you know what I'm talking about Jill), she's been my hang out pal when no one else was around, she's been the one I laughed with out of sheer exhaustion, the one I sat in Larry's Subs with for hours on end (hey, it was before coffee shops so give us a break!), and she's the one that I know I can go for days or weeks without talking to and pick up right where we left off. Jill is one that understands me. I know that Jill can read me like a book. She knows I need her prayers, and I know she is praying for me and my family all the time. Jill always lends that listening ear and we have some of the most in depth conversations. I thank God for sending Jill into my life. She's stronger then she gives herself credit for, and she is a wonderful mother. God sent her on quite the journey to her son Madox, but He saw her through and what a blessing he is to her now. God's timing is always right, huh Jill? I will always have a special place for Jill, Clayton, and Madox in my heart. As I witnessed the birth of their child, I saw the true reflections of God's love within this family. I can't imagine my life without my JillieFaye. God bless you and keep you always.
There's also the obvious women, my mother, my big granny, and my sister. They know the roles they play in my life... and I could never repay them for all they've done for me. My life without these women would be on a totally different page, I'm sure. To each of you, God bless you. May you always know that you have a special place in my heart, and your friendship means everything to me. Thank you God for each of these women!!!!