To the Prettiest, Most Bestest Woman I Know:
I have the prettiest most bestest mother in the world and I don’t think she knows that I know she’s the prettiest most bestest mother in the world.
One more time so there is no question:
“I, Kendria Smith who also pens under the name of januarie York, have the prettiest most bestest mother in the world”.
I have tried to write this blog three times. It wasn’t until that sentence came to my heart that I knew I had a grip on what I wanted to say and how to say it. I deleted a lot of repetitive mumbo jumbo and started with that sentence so that the kid in me could speak directly to my mother. I write this blog-letter to the woman who was brave enough to give birth to me. You should see me publicly declare that I love you and I am proud of you. I admire you and consider you to be a breathtaking sight for open eyes. It hurts me to see you unhappy, wounded or anything less that joyful. I know you have deeply woven pains that I can’t fix or color pretty with a poem and an audience. But I pray and have asked those close to me (and even those who don’t know me) to pray for you. I think you are overdue for God’s love to rain all over you and shower you with peace of heart and limitless reasons to smile. I know life doesn’t work like that; there is always something lurking around the corner ready to knock the wind out of you. I’ve seen your wind take a beating, yet you continue to stand straight and forward facing against the darkest, scariest storms headed your way.
I love you mom. I still remember the internal war with myself when I was transitioning from calling you mommy to mom. I wanted to forever hold on to the nurturing sentiments that exist in a word as simple as ‘mommy’. Charge it to the kid that lives in my heart; the same one that begins blogs with sentences with words such as ‘bestest’. You are forever my mommy. Many times I have wished I were half the gladiator you have always been. You have always had a rebellious personality and have never been afraid to speak up for yourself and other people. I don’t know if I ever told you but I always moved by the stories of your growing up and the tenacity you showed even as a child. You have always been a stunningly beautiful woman and the older I have gotten, the more I have wondered if you knew that. In fact, I’ve wondered if you knew that I knew, that you are the prettiest, most bestest mother in the world.
You’re the mother who shook the grounds of Indianapolis to get me into a school that would provide me with a healthy high school education.
You’re the mother woman who offered my high school friend a place to stay when she was in need.
You’re the mother who busted out of the door to help me fight a group of teenagers that came to jump me for a second a time when I was 16. I remember that and I remember thinking to myself ‘mom, you can’t do this’. But looking back all these years later, I know now it was all you could do. It was what you had to do. You are the mother that will protect at all costs.
You are also the same woman who has selflessly taken care of several ailing and sick family members in hopes that you could either prolong their life or at the very least, give them easy and peaceful final years and days. I wish I were half the woman you are and I don’t consider myself a bad apple at all. I think I’ve done pretty well, but it all originated from you. All the way down to the writing. It was your journal I found in that octagon-shaped dark brown table we used to have in the living room. It was your words and feelings on paper that taught me what to do when no one (or everyone) was watching.
God gave me the gift and you gave me the tools.
You are like this third world being, but from a better world: God’s world.
You’re an angel. I think I realized it first when I was eight years old and saw you walking down the aisle on your wedding day. You were magic in your white dress with the lace sleeves and those tiny golden blonde curls falling from your veil. You moved like you were floating. As you walked, what I initially thought were controllable butterflies in my stomach turned into sinister little crybabies with a rushing urge to scream out. I couldn’t control it! Each step you took loosened my hold and before I knew it, my imaginary fingers were too slippery to control my wing-grip and the butterflies flew out and the crybabies yelled through my eyes. I remember that feeling. You looked like you had super powers.
And you do.
Mom, you really DO have super powers. God appointed angelic powers and abilities. I get upset when I think too hard about the fact that you have spent such a great deal of your life taking care of everyone else and have not had a chance to just go out and do things you love and enjoy. I can’t understand how that’s fair. You deserve a day, a year, heck the rest of your lifetime to just enjoy being you.
A cancer survivor.
I only hope that we are blessed to have many more years on Earth to share with each other. On this day, I salute you and it’s not because Mother’s Day is coming. It’s not because I am januarie York nor do I have something to prove to the public.
I salute you because without you I am nothing.
I was nothing before you. You are not just my mother, you are my friend. You are my heart. My chord of life for life and my mommy for the kid that lives in me.
It was you that went to the open mic host and demanded that your daughter be able to perform her poem after waited patiently the whole night and being told to come back next week. Who else had my back right then but you? That night sent my life to another playing field. A safer one and one where I could actually create change.
The lyrics playing through my speakers right now say “Where would I go, what would I do without you?” Would I have ever did a poem or won a slam? Would I be here? Blogging for The Recorder?
You are my truth. My support system. My motivator. My punch maker!!!! Lol.
One of the strongest women I’ve ever met; a beautiful concoction of love and feisty attitude that sits proudly in high cheekbones. I pray for you and for us and I apologize for the times I have neglected to let you know that I adore you. I’ve hurt you and I know this. For those times, I apologize. An angel should never be broken. We have to learn how to love our guardians! For the time we have left together and the times we are moving into, I promise to not leave you alone to deal with whatever is next without me.
I love you mom.
You’re the prettiest, most bestest mother I could have ever have. You have super powers. God sent super powers. I see them brighter than ever. I look up to you and the true Angel in human form that you are.
And I thank God, that it was US, chosen to be this pair.
Good, bad and in between.
About Januarie York:
Januarie York is from Indianapolis, In and has been writing since she was a young girl. She started performing her poetry in 2003 and hasn’t looked back. Her colorful and descriptive poetry have allowed her to share the stage with some of her mentors and favorites, as well as create her own shows. She has released two spoken word CDs, one chapbook, produced two spoken word shows and is currently writing her first full length book. In addition to poetry, she has done freelance work for several local magazines and websites and is now the City Editor of Insight2Incite Magazine Indy. She also is a contributing writer for several blogs. januarie is well on her way to becoming a premiere and sought out writer of her time and has her performance eyes set on debuting a theatrical poetry show on Broadway, in the footsteps of For Colored Girls. Now is the time to tune in to this self-proclaimed “WomanOfTheArts” is.