Today I had a very pleasant visit with my precious mother. She lives with my older sister, for which I am very grateful. My sister has taken the daunting task of “looking after” our mother of 82 years young and it is, I am sure a blessing and at times a frustration. Not to say it would be hard for my sis, she loves her with her whole heart, but anytime you have the full responsibility of anyone it can be a bit much, but she does this with great joy and love for our mom and our family is blessed to have our mom in a safe and loving place. For this I will always honor my sister for the sacrifice she has made. While visiting with my mom, whom of which I respect more than she could ever know, she was telling me of a time long ago when I was around 5 or 6 years old. Now needless to say, she like me can’t tell you where she laid her glasses last, but can remember the past joys and sorrows as if they happened within the past hour. Odd how that happens and I am already right there with her. We were talking about growing up with hopes and dreams for the future and I was relating to her how it seems odd to me that kids these days are many times without any goals or plans for their future. We debated it back and forth and we realized it is because kids of this generation or for the past 20 years or so have not had to struggle so much. We like most parents have tried to give our children everything they needed as well a wanted. I grew up not as poor as my Mom, but without a lot of the more modern doo dads of the day, hand-me-downs and such and I think I am the better for it. It gave me a strong work ethic and the strength to work for what I wanted as I got older. My mom grew up very poor, in a town that the main employment was a Limestone factory, Sherwood, TN, which is on the Alabama side of Monteagle Mountain. When the Limestone factory left, all the work left and men had to travel to cities close by (close meaning up a mountain and down the other side usually!)Her goal was to someday leave that tiny town and become something amazing, maybe a nurse? Well as fate would have it, she married a handsome man who joined the Army and took her to Germany, eventually, had 5 children total and ended up on a farm way out in Readyville, TN. Well, probably not the excitement she was looking for as a young girl but it was something. I am pretty glad, that is how I got here and I am lucky to have a great mom. She did have aspirations and her adventurous spirit came in handy after many years of marriage and the eventual time, after my dad left us, of just her and us kids, and later on she was able to take a trip to Fairbanks, Alaska to visit my older brother and his beautiful family, who was in the Army. From that trip she stayed and went to work on the North Slope, the gas pipeline and stayed for 9 years. My mom has lived her life renewing it over and over, never scared of the next chapter(or she never showed she was), forging ahead for a new adventure. During our conversation about the kids these days she proceeded to tell me a little story about myself. She stated that when I was home one day with her, which wasn’t the norm because I most days stayed with my Granny Maxwell, while she worked and my siblings were at school. But on this day she was home with me and she said I had an old handbag that my precious granny had given me and I was sitting on the step down into our kitchen in our old farm house. She said I was playing with the purse and talking up a storm (no!) and stated matter of factly that …Mamma, someday I am going to take my new purse and be an artist and go to New York City! I almost cracked up and said, why did I say that, did she know? She said it was because every afternoon of my young life, while at my Granny’s house, after lunch everything in our world stopped, and we would sit in the living room and watch her stories. Stories are Soap Operas and in the south we called them Stories! She said that the Stories were were all from New York City and I had always wanted to go there. What a revelation to me….I did not remember that, I did remember the handbag, it was black leathery and one of those claspy button closures on top for which I would usually pinch my finger every time, with one short handle, old school, old lady bag that always smelled like Juicy Fruit gum on the inside. The funny thing to me was I have always wanted to live in New York….You give me a good chick flick with New York scenes, i.e. “You’ve Got Mail” and I am there. I have told my husband and he has always known of my desire to go to the Big Apple and has told me plenty of times he would take me someday, I am still waiting, not in a hurry, I will go when it is the right time for me to, But I never knew I had that dream so young…to be an Artist and live in NYC! I may never be a famous artist, I realize my limitations but I might just get there someday? For this time in my life, the Lord made a different path to take, He set me on HIS path and it has been rewarding and a blessing, He gave me so much more than I had ever dreamed of, I am blessed. But someday I will go. This brings me finally to the point…I had a dream, hopes of a future, I always knew there could be MORE! It boggles my mind at the inability of the younger than me people of today who have nothing they want to do, not about money or success, but a dream, a hope of if there was nothing standing in their way. I don’t really know what to make of it, it saddens me, once a person looses hope, what is left? There is a song that Martina McBride made famous a few years ago, which to this day makes me cry when I hear it. It talks about getting out there and going for it, whatever IT is, just at least try…just dance! That is what I hope for my own precious children whom I have attempted to have influence on these past 26 years….JUST DANCE! Whatever you want in your heart of hearts, whatever it takes to make it happen…go for it. The worst thing that could happen is you could fail…so what. Failure is sometimes the best thing. It can cause us to get up and try again, which in turn builds character and faith and causes us to live and not waste away with what could have been. I still have hopes and dreams, I am not to old, I know there must be more and I will not miss the chance to dance( with my beautiful husband, hand in hand) and one day it might just be in New York, New York!!!