In this Thanksgiving season, there are many people I’m thankful for. My family, my brothers and sisters at my church, my fellow WWBC members, my fellow Life List Club members, all my tweeps and subscribers . . . the list could go on and on. But I want to select one particular group to give a very special thanks for: mothers.
Mothers like my long-deceased grandmother, who raised five children—losing two to illness before they were grown—without the benefit of any of our modern appliances. She used to wash her family’s clothes by hand on a rub-board and dry them on an outdoor clothesline. She travelled by wagon at age 10 or 12 across the continental divide as her family moved from Missouri to western Colorado. Later in life she sat with me watching the moon landing.
Mothers like my own, who began raising her four children in Texas before air-conditioning, before electric clothes dryers and automatic dishwashers and disposals, ironing all of our clothes since there were no permanent-press fabrics back then. Taking a back seat to my father’s desires and ambitions, even though she has a college degree and a good IQ. Who helped me take over raising my nephew when my little sister’s drug addiction rendered her unable.
Mothers like my daughter, who also has a college degree and an exceptional IQ but has never had any problem submitting herself willingly to her husband’s authority. Who comes home from a full-time job to laundry, cooking and other chores involving raising three boys and caring for a husband, taking on extra activities incumbent on the wife of a youth pastor and later pastor.
Mothers like my wife, who raised her son alone from the time he was two, sent him thru college to two degrees with no financial help and gave him his first car, all the while serving as a teacher, then counselor and finally assistant principal in a big-city school district. Who loves and treats my daughter and grandsons as her own. Who still works as a substitute principal or assistant principal as often as she can, in her 11th year of retirement.
Mothers like my older sister, who raised four kids on her pastor-husband’s near-starvation pay, making the grocery budget work by mixing milk from powder, baking her own homemade bread and cooking whatever game or fish her husband brought home, loving the three she adopted every bit as much as the one she gave birth to.
Mothers like my friend Kristen Lamb, who not only tends to a husband and a toddler, with all the cooking, cleaning, etc., that go with that, but also manages to write 3000 to 4000 words daily on her WIP and four blogs a week, but also gives her time and her heart to other writers in leading our in-person Warrior Writers Boot Camp as well as several on-line writers’ groups.
Mothers like my ex-wife, who raised two step-children with the same love she showed her own. Mothers like my friend Jenny Hansen, who endured serious problem pregnancies to bring their children into this world and now fight serious health problems while carrying out all the duties of writer/mothers. Mothers like so many of my writer friends who juggle husbands and kids and day jobs and housekeeping to find a moment here or an hour there to sit at their computers and write—often ending up with blogs, short stories, articles, novels and non-fiction books of superior quality. I wish space allowed me to mention each of you by name.
Here’s a special thanks to all of you. Most of us husbands would fall by the wayside trying to do all that you do, and the honest ones among us would admit we wouldn’t want to try.
And, finally, thanks to God for making all of you what you are.
David N. Walker is a Christian father and grandfather, a grounded pilot and a near-scratch golfer who had to give up the game because of shoulder problems. A graduate of Duke University, he spent 42 years as a health insurance agent. Most of that career was spent in Texas, but for a few years he traveled many other states. He started writing about 20 years ago, and has six unpublished novels to use as primers on how NOT to write fiction. Since his retirement from insurance a few years ago, he has devoted his time to helping Kristen Lamb start Warrior Writers’ Boot Camp and trying to learn to write a successful novel himself.