Meet Mrs. Linda Jones
I could not begin this series without my mom. She is my influence to write, to become a mother, and to exceed greatness. Married for 45 years, mother of 4, grandmother of 2, my mom is the strongest person I know.
Since I met my mother, I have known her to work as a driver for a local dealership in Hawaii (this was before cars were transported via car carrier trailers), she worked in banking for about ten years, worked in catering, and now is an administrative assistant at Samford University. She knows how to sew (just found out that she made her maternity clothes when pregnant with my younger brother and me), find the best deals (she is always comparison shopping), host all types of parties (I think this is why I want a house big enough to entertain), and consistently nurse me back to health (I am not the most compliant patient.) Quite the versatile woman!
Born and raised in Gadsden, AL, my mom is number 7 out of 8 born to Major Nelson, Sr. and Katie Nelson Moore. The older I get, the more I feel like I can see my grandmother in her. I am not sure if she appreciates the comparison, but I miss my grandmother, so likeness is endearing. And I have also loved that our birthdays are exactly one month apart!
Why you should LOVE her
Growing up, it was hard to see her selflessness. Children innately want out of need and mothers innately give out of necessity. However, it felt that my mother exceeded her inherent desires and gave out of want and love of people. She taught me how to be a true servant, a help, a friend indeed. She is consistently finding ways to give to any and everybody. (Which is great because she could be defined as a shopaholic aka comparison shopper!)
Years ago, I asked my mom how many children did she wish for when she was younger. She answered, “four but I never knew that God was listening because I never expected it happen.” But my mother says that her children are her greatest gifts from God and four big accomplishments. I know we have taken her through every emotion imaginable, but it has never stopped her from finding ways to make life easier and more manageable for us.
The Weight She Carries
My mom shows her children that she loves us many times over. She prays that we live long healthy lives. She admits that although she is not perfect, she is not stupid nor a push-over. Mom has always been a no-nonsense type of person which is evident in her expressions of love.
Growing up in a military family requires constant change. We moved several times between the time I was born until age 6. After that, my dad would go on tours alone. My parents allowed my younger brother and me to live in a stable, loving environment. It was not perfect by any means. Reflecting, I never remember feeling as if we missed out on anything or if we ever went without a meal. My dad made sure we were covered and secure. My mom made certain we never missed a beat by keeping order and consistency.
The Reach of her Influence
When she became pregnant with my sister, I not only became fascinated with the miracle of pregnancy but also with my mom. At age 10, never did I imagine being opportune to witness God’s handiwork. I read every magazine and book that came home about the stages and phases of pregnancy. I know this birthed and blossomed my passion for helping families and children.
All of my friends, since I was young, have always loved my mom. Though, she managed to always intimidate every guy I dated. My dad wanted, encouraged the intimidation, but mom was quite unsuspecting. From ages 9 or 10 to 12, I was able to celebrate my birthdays with a sleepover. Looking back, she is not sure how or why I was able to have so many sleepovers, but they were some of my fondest memories. Friends that were able to attend consecutive years always look forward to her breakfast spread – biscuits, grits, eggs, sausage, bacon, toast – THE WORKS! Nothing says loving like a home-cooked breakfast.
Today, my friends seek her dinner etiquette expertise for their events or try to adopt her as a surrogate grandmother for their children. These memories and opportunities allow me to see her beyond the role of “mom” but also teacher, professional, chef, and beloved. She offers sound advice, gives items you never knew you needed, and provides unyielding support.
She spreads her work ethic, her compassion, and her dedication through her greatest accomplishments. Her home and her children are her kingdom. According to Proverbs 11:11, the favor that rests on righteous people exalts a city. Per her own words, my mom is not perfect, but her righteousness has yielded favor upon her seed. Each of her children has managed to shed a positive light on our city either through our community service efforts, artistic talents or educational endeavors.
Her Initiative for Change
Her nearly half of a century of marriage has taught her the simplicity of life. She would advise young couples to go for simple. She admonishes wives, “just be you not what your spouse wants. He was attracted to you so don’t try to be him.”
She desires for her children to be true to themselves and God because He knows all and sees all. She wants her children to learn to become closer to each other than any other person by learning to talk, listen and if possible, help each other but not take advantage.
My mom has earned her stripes. Her love carries a generational blessing. We have inherited a great treasure that cannot be tarnished. We will continue to strive to give her reasons to rejoice and never cease to call her Blessed. At the end of it all, I really just wanna make my momma proud.