This Happened Today

In yesterday’s post, I shared a particular moment with my son showing his grandmother a compelling video of the harmful effects of cigarette smoking. Tailor is on a mission to help her win the war against tobacco addiction and, from the back seat,  I am cheering him on. Who am I to tell my son to leave his grandmother alone?  Nope.  I won’t do that. I am a spectator enjoying the parade.

Well. After dinner today, my mom and my son walked to the mailbox together. It took some coaxing on his part, but she agreed.

The walk to the mailbox was short but possibly the beginning of a change and the start of a new habit.  Their walk to the mailbox replaced mom’s after-dinner cigarette.

Grandchildren make the world

a little softer, 

a little kinder, 

a little warmer.

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Why My Son Wants To Help His Grandmother

“Grandchildren complete life’s circle of love.”

 

For the fall semester, my 14-year-old has a freshman health class.  Tailor’s class is learning about the harmful effects of smoking cigarettes.  Nothing is more convincing than graphic images that show the deterioration of the human body.

fullsizeoutput_2354After dinner today he knocked on his grandmom’s bedroom door.

“Grandmom, can I show you something?”

She agreed.

The Top 40: Scariest Anti-Smoking Commercials [Part three] video undoubtedly left an unshakeable impression on Tailor. So much that he shared it with his grandmother.

Last week, he shared the video with me.  I sat and watched Part two and three. The video is striking and disturbing.  If you are a parent, watch the video and show it to your children. If you know a smoker, share it with them too.

My son is concerend about his grandmother’s health. She is 84 years-old.

For 68 lasting years, tobacco has infiltrated every aspect of her body.

He hears her deep and continuous cough… the loud rattling echoing from her lungs. My son notices her shortness of breath after only a few steps.  He wants to extend her life.

She quietly sat and watched the seven and half minute video. Below is their post-viewing chat.

My Mom:  Thank you for letting me look at the video Tailor.

Tailor:  Do you think the video will change the way you feel about smoking?

My Mom:  It’s not that easy to quit.  You have cravings…

She said goodnight to everyone and went to her room.

Tailor sat on the computer to look up strategies on how to help a smoker quit.  Monday, he’ll try one approach:  asking her to walk with him after dinner.

He knows there is a good possibility that she will shoot him down, but hubby and I encouraged him to try anyway.

In the shadow of observing the two, I realized how badly my son wants to convince his grandmother to quit smoking.  Just maybe he can do something that no one else has been able to do.

When the world says, “Give up.”

HOPE whispers, “Try one more time.”

 

Additional Reading

Smoking Facts

Youth Product Tobacco Use

How Cigarettes Damage Your Body

Tobacco Threatens Us All

 

 


Celebrating 81 Years

Happy Birthday Mom!!

Today is mom’s 81st birthday.  Talk about blessings!  Well, first I am blessed to live to see my mom celebrate the milestone.  Second, she’s blessed, because many folks do not live to see 81. My children have had precious years with their grandmother. The blessings are endless!

“Lena,”  “Florence,” “Grandma Dynamite,” “Grand mom,” whatever you choose to call her is very much alive and kickin!

IMG_3033.JPG

 Happy that mom is celebrating her 81st Birthday today!   #100HappyDaysChallenge #100HappyDays4Lexa  Day#18

Known quite well for her outspoken and sharp tongue.  Rarely asked for her opinion, yet she will still (to this day) give it all to you.  The good, bad, and the downright ugly!  She will tell you,

 “My mom always told me to tell the truth, so that’s what I do!

Known by everyone as mama and pop, my grandparents raised mom and 12 siblings in a small shack in the country, a good 20 miles or so from civilization.

They lived without electricity, gas, or running water.  Getting up in the middle of the night to use the “bathroom” meant going outside to the outhouse.  And yet today, I have the nerve to turn my nose up to a port-potty.  Back in the day, mom would have been too darn happy to use that amenity.

Laundry meant using a washboard.

washboad

 Just imagine laundry for 15 family members using wash boards!

Every school day, she (and her siblings) walked miles on a long dirt road, narrowed by over-sized oak and pine trees, to catch the school bus.  Rain, shine, hot, and frigid cold—didn’t matter they still walked wearing hand-stitched clothing and run down shoes, eating mama’s (my grandmother’s) homemade biscuits.

Mom survived some real hard times.  I was curious about 1933, the year she was born, so I hit the internet!

* The average cost of a new home was $5,750!

* My favorite board game, Monopoly was invented

* The chocolate chip cookie was invented

* 1933 was the worst year of the depression

* The Drive-in movie theater was invented

* On September 10th, the first Negro League All-Start game occurred.

It is no secret that mom and I rarely see eye to eye (I’m laughing), but that has no impact on the love or affection that I have for her.  Every other day we disagree about something (I’m dead serious), but I still show her the respect she deserves.

While I don’t agree with some of her methods of raising me, I am certain that my daughter can say the same about me.  It is what it is.  I think it is Oprah who says, when you know better, you do better.

There are no do-overs in life, I affirm that each generation should learn from the previous generation and raise the bar with regards to everything—education, parenting, careers, etc…

I am grateful and happy that she is still going strong!  Mom is still independent.  Today, if you even look at her the wrong way or mess with her kids (there are two of us) or her favorite sisters, she will give you the cussin out of a lifetime.  Lol!!  Years ago she’d slap you in a heartbeat.  Haaaahaaa!   Though it wasn’t funny then.

Anyways, I give props to mom because she empowered me and taught me to be the strong, to be resilient, to be independent, fight for I want (figuratively & literally), and to be the bad ass and confident daughter that I am today.  Hehe!  Funny but true.  Thanks mom!!

Never wanting anyone to make a fuss over her on birthday, I’m not sure how she’d feel about this post, but I plan on sharing it with her (later) in a very special way.

Happy Birthday Mother!!!