I am speaking on behalf of the grandchildren about our personal experiences with Mama Dot and how she has shaped who we are today…
I have to admit that I had a little bit of a difficult time putting everything into words because Mama Dot doesn’t just play a role in our lives, she is one of our angels. And to define her place in our lives through words is next to impossible.
However, in my attempt, I decided to contact the other grandchildren to also get their input and one of the things that we discussed was how Mama Dot has a gift of making each of her grandchildren feel as though we were the “most special person in the world”:
I remember spending time and having conversations with Mama Dot and she would always look at me and say, “you are so smart”… and she said it so often that I felt like it had to be true, I believed her, and for a great deal of my childhood, I truly thought that I was a “child genius.”
Also, I remember that I never quite understood Mama Dot’s sleeping patterns. When I was young, I would always stay the night and when I woke up in the morning, at about 7 or 8, Mama Dot would have already gone to the grocery store, went to the church, came home cleaned the entire house, cooked breakfast, washed the dishes and had breakfast waiting for me on the stove covered with surrand wrap.
Later in life, I discovered that individually, she made us all feel as though we were the most special people in the world.
Jozlyn remembers coming to visit and how every single time Mama Dot made sure that she made Jozlyn feel at home by accommodated her crazy eating habits and making sure that she always had cans of green beans &corn, chicken nuggets (white meat only) and French fries.
Even though Jozlyn wasn’t born here, she still has the same bond with Mama Dot.
Monica is the oldest grandchild. She remembers getting all of the attention, (until all of us came along.)
Monica said that when she was a little girl, she would stay in the “green house” with Mama Dot while Papa Earnest went to work and Mama Dot would cook their favorite dish (cornish hen and brussel sprouts) they would then go shopping at Mama Dots favorite department stores (Steins and Rosenblums) because that’s who sold the “good shoes”.
Monica said that she was so attached to Mama Dot that she got a whopping every Sunday because she would throw tantrums because she wanted to sit next to mama dot at the piano bench.
Debra says that when she felt that she didn’t have anyone to talk to, she would always go to Mama Dot and they would pray away the problem.
Debra also remembers when she would go and sing solos at different churches and events and that Mama Dot went with her to every one because she was the only one that Debra felt could play for her. Mama Dot never failed to be there. She also made sure that Debra wasn’t just singing the songs, she made sure that she understood what she was singing and explained the meaning.
When I talked to Tamera, she simply told me that Mama Dot was someone that she is always able to talk to… that she loves her like a mom… that she is like an angel… and that she is heaven sent…
Brandy remembers Mama Dot teaching her different solos to sings in church and Mama Dot would do that by singing them herself to show the range (BRANDY says Mama Dot couldn’t sing, but she would try her darnest because she was determined to teach Brandy the correct way to sing the song).
Kim remembers how much she appreciated when Mama Dot helped her make a gingerbread house for her 4H project. Mama Dot was patient and made sure that Kim did all of the details perfectly and because of all of their hard work, Kim went home with the First Place Trophy.
Brian says that Mama Dot has influenced him in more ways than she may know. She taught him the importance of going to church, because, he said, she made us go every single Sunday.
Brain also said that Mama Dot made all of us feel as though we were her favorite.
When I asked Rodrick about his experiences with Mama Dot, he said that “she taught him the standard by which he gages other people, and that the world would be a better place if more people were like his Mama Dot.
And now, as adults, because you lifted us so high, we feel as though we are worthy of everything and that we can accomplish anything. And we all want to thank you from the bottom of our heart. You are our angel and we are blessed to have you as our grandmother.
HAPPY 80th Birthday!!!