The words "Happy Mother's Day" Next to a flower basket
Karen Arnold / Public Domain Pictures

The spirit of 1976, the Bicentennial, America’s 200th birthday, and the starting of our Metro Rail system. I was fortunate enough to be one of the first people to ride this “new” system. March 27, 1976, marked the day the first portion of the system opened. My mother (now deceased) allowed me to go up to Union Station to share in this historic moment. At the ripe age of 12 years, no father in the home, my Mom always told me that a bird in the hand is worth more than two in the bush.  

It was at that very instant that I had made up my mind to fend for myself. Early on, I acquired a “go get it” attitude, which was passed down from my Momma. See, she worked two jobs to keep clothes on me and my siblings’ backs, food on the table and shoes on our feet. You know, down through the years, God’s been truly good to me and my Mom, especially, my Mom. She taught me how to cook and clean and sew, at an early age. I used to prepare baked cakes and goods with my mother.   

I remember some mornings, while she was preparing to go to work for these two Chevy Chase lawyers, as their housekeeper, I would assist her in the ironing of her dresses, blouses and sometimes the mending of her worn stockings. It was then I learned that finger nail polish was not only used for fingers but also for mending stockings.   

My Mom is a teacher and she left a legacy which I can continue to pass on and build on. She, not the last or the least, told me before she passed that “God bless the child that’s got his own.”  

Happy Mother’s Day (RIP). You are my role model.