Tuesday, 14 May 2013 18:00

Walking With God In Another Woman's Shoes

Written by 
La Vonda Staples and her daughters Sarah Vaughn and Joslyn Lavonne La Vonda Staples and her daughters Sarah Vaughn and Joslyn Lavonne
Thinking about writing. Here's the thought: how many of us can or could walk in our mother's shoes? I'm thinking about my mother. She called me today and her presence filled this house. 38 years as a teacher. 46 years as a mother. 62 years old. What happened to her? What are her pains and her joys? Cannot look at this thing through my own myopic vision. Not when someone you love has put her own feelings aside and shared so much love. Put out that hand when mine was far from strong. I love my mother.
 
I noticed that the first name I called upon. The first names I said were God and mama. I called out to God to help me get through the pain and for my mama to comfort me. I apologized to her for not seeing her. I hope and I know that we are at a point of no turning back. I feel like I'm falling in love. I want everyone around me and reading me and listening to me to know that I would not have what you like, love, and admire about me if not for her.
 
While in her womb I was carried aloft by the symphonies, gospel hymns, and the Ree Ree she played on the grand piano in our home. I came to this world having been bathed in music since the moment the egg started to divide and the cells were formed into a "me." How many were given this gift? I was. And I have always been brought to tears by the sound of my mother singing, "Walk Around Heaven." In those times I know that man can't create, the best of music which is lifted by a celestial purpose is a command directive from God. My mother was chosen by God to bring this ministry.
 
And I? Perhaps more than my four sisters and two brothers was the accidental recipient of this beauty. Although not a musician I have the gift of hearing a note and telling you what it is in a reasonable proximity. My ears were trained when she was being trained.
 
In all of my writing I have NEVER told you all this. My mother is a classically trained pianist as well as being one of those who still carries out, with excellent execution, the form of true gospel music. When I turn away from a nasal tone or over-run runs it is because of hers. Her alto voice rising above all others in its' precision, resonance, and tone. She can sing blues too. Bonnie Raitt would go home and stay home if she EVER heard my mother sing, "I Can't Make You Love Me."
 
The same spirit of depression, that hand of darkness, was on my mother. I pray for my life but on this day I have learned to pray for my mother. I hope God allows her to have an appreciation of her beauty. She is most marvelous in my eyes and she MUST BE more so in His. He KNOWS His creations. He can be proud of the time it took to bring those fingers and that mind into being. To pull her exceptional gifts from the clay and form them into something wonderful and unique.
 
And did I tell she's good at math too? Oh yeah. That gene passed me by. I don't mind telling you I'm arithmetically illiterate. I know my plusses and minuses and my two and threes. I see no purpose for geometry other than the words which populate its vocabulary. But my mother does. She likes it. Yes. She does.
 
Hear my voice and you hear hers. Hear Sarah's voice and you hear mine. Hear Sarah and hear my mother. Praise for my mother is never too far from Joslyn's lips. Deservedly so, she was mothered by my mother when I was unwilling or unable.
 
While I am engaged in housewifery I'm walking. I walk fast. I walk slow. I walk up the steps. I walk down. I walk with God and all of the while I walk with Him I'm walking in my mother's shoes.
 
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