If you are friends with me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter (@DawnTolbert), you might expect me to write about Larry. We are celebrating our 22nd anniversary today. Actually, we have been all week with a trip to Savannah and nice dinners both dining out and at home. And I will say that I love Larry very much and am thankful for him.
But today’s also special for another reason. In fact, it’s the reason we chose to get married on this date. It’s my grandmother’s birthday — my dad’s mom. She was born on July 16, 1900, which I always thought was brilliant planning on her part…or maybe her parents’ part since it was always super easy to keep up with her age.
My Mama Camp taught me to love to sing hymns and to wrap Christmas presents. I napped on her couch to the sound of the ticking of the mantle clock that sits beside me now. It hasn’t ticked in years and years, but I hear it in my mind.
My grandparents lived in our front yard — or we lived in theirs. I never was quite sure which. But we saw them most every day, and I stayed with them a lot. I remember learning to love the news watching Walter Cronkite on their TV. And we’d watch Little House on the Prairie and goodness knows what else.
But Mama Camp taught me to always think about how I treat others (when I was bratty to my sister before she left to have surgery). I remember chasing the car to tell her I loved her, and I’ve tried to remember that lesson when I deal with others. She also taught me that I could do things. See, as the youngest, I got told a lot (or heard it anyway) that I was too young to do things. But Mama Camp gave me the job of dusting her figurines each week. I thought they were beautiful and treated them with care. They’re in our glass curio cabinet to this day.
I lost her the year I turned 11, and I still miss her — gosh! Is it really 35 years later. I’m glad that Larry and I share her special day, and I just want to say, “I love you, Mama, and happy birthday.”