Saturday, May 7, 2011

A Strong Heart






Frances Agnes Elizabeth Peters : 1927-2008


She was born in a small coal mining town near Pittsburgh. She was born one month late, and with a tooth already in her mouth. When she was seven, her father left the family for another woman, something unheard of in 1934. That was when she came down with severe asthma, which doctors didn't know much about back then. She spent the next several years in hospitals inside oxygen tents, or at home in bed, at times barely catching her breath, unable to lay flat and still inhale. She had to drop out of elementary school, and was never to return. She had to lie about her age to get a work permit at age 16, and never stopped working after that. From about the age of 45 till she retired at 65, she worked two full time jobs, 16 hours a day, with never a day off. She received many awards, all with no education. At about age 60, she was mugged on a city street. She would not let go of her purse, and was dragged screaming. She was a fighter. She was tough as nails and soft as butter. At age 65, she retired and moved here to Virginia to be with us, but kept on working part time. She adored work, and it gave her her identity. She got bladder cancer and had two major surgeries. Went back to work. Then got lung cancer and had part of a lung removed. Finally the cancer spread. The tumors blocked her stomach so nothing would stay down. The hospital fed her thru I.V., but then withdrew it. We said our good-byes and they put her in a deep sleep, and removed all fluids. She would starve to death. Usually in that state, a person lasts maybe a week. She lasted almost two weeks. She was a fighter. I watched as her nightgown went up and down from the beat of her strong heart. I watched. It was un unspeakable time, so why do I speak of it now and sadden your day? Because it is Mother's Day and I must. I want others to know her. Will this help lessen my pain? Probably not. But now her story is here, and it seems right. For some reason, Blogger won't put my pictures in the right order, but you can figure it out..


"...do not forsake your mother's teaching. Bind them upon your heart forever; fasten them around your neck. When you walk, they will guide you; when you sleep, they will watch over you; when you awake, they will speak to you." Proverbs 6:20,22

36 comments:

Annie said...

Dear Ginny, Your lovely mother was one scrappy lady. I'm guessing that is were you get your "can do" spirit from. Thank you for introducing her to us.

Regina said...

Thanks Ginny..this was extremely moving! I recsll a little from a prior post, but you seemed to touch on more and of course, I could only remember a few things..but am so glad you did this. The photos are just fine in that order but I know what you mean. I love that pose she struck!! They are terrific and I so admire her fighting spirit!! Wishing you the most wonderful Mother's Day ever-

SquirrelQueen said...

Your mother sounds like quite a lady Ginny, this is a great tribute to her memory.

Happy Mother's Day!

Arti said...

Oh Ginny! This is really moving.. I learnt a lesson today to strive on diligently despite all odds. Hats off to her for being such a brave fighter right till the end..
Happy Mothers day!

Ann said...

WOW!!!!
What an excellent tribute to a wonderful woman.

Sandra said...

I am blown away by your story. sister mine, this will blow your mind.... my mothers daddy left my grandmother for another woman in the mid 30's, not sure of the exact year. divorce was unheard of then, this is way strange. when mother married in 43 and I was born in 44, and i am sure your story of marriage and birth will almost mirror mine. your mother was a wonderful woman, as was mine. mother was kind and caring and loving and gentle the exact opposite of my dad. hugs sister mine
the good thing about them being divorced is i got to go to Callahan Fl on vacation to see grandaddy and hazel and another vacation to see my grandmother here in Palmetto FL. lots more presents since there were two of them.

reanaclaire said...

A touching dedication to your mom.. so nice, Ginny!

Ann said...

Very touching story about your mother. She sounds like one heck of a lady. I think this is the perfect post for today.
Wishing you a very Happy Mother's Day

Tracy said...

Ginny,
What a beautiful tribute to your mom...she was one tough lady and I hear the pride in your words. She is still with you, I see it in your eyes, through your words and in your everyday life; what a tribute to her in your everyday life!
Thanks for sharing your heart today!
Happy Mother's Day!

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

She was a special woman and raised a very special daughter as well.

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

I love hearing your mom's story, Ginny. She sounds like such an interesting and strong woman.

Happy Mother's Day :-)

Lady Jane said...

Aw Ginny I am sorry your mom had such a sickly young life. She was a fighter though and it isnt hard to figure out where your persona comes from. May the Light shine on you this Mother's Day...

DawnTreader said...

A very moving post and a tough life story. Thanks for sharing.

Melanie said...

Your mother sounds like she had a lot of spunk! The pictures are great!
Thank you for sharing her story.
I hope you have a wonderful day.♥

Stephanie V said...

Such hard lives our mothers and grandmothers had. My mother was determined that her children's lives would be much easier and that we would be more loved than she had been. Our mothers were fighters - they had to be!

Karin said...

What a deeply meaningful post and such a great tribute to your mother! I'm glad you are able to share - so that we all can learn more about endurance when things get tough. Seemed to have been no ounce of self-pity in your wonderful mom! She left her wonderful legacy in you!

wildlifewatcher said...

Hi Ginny, You are blessed by your family and your precious granddaughter! We remember mothers with love and happy memories. Have a super great Mother's Day!

Marnilla@wordpress.com said...

This is the very best Mother's Day post I've read today, and I've read a lot!

Every mother should receive such a tribute from her children!

Happy Mothers Day to you, Ginny.

Joanne said...

Your Mom was a great, strong and loving person...I know that because you are her daughter and even though I have never met you ...through your words I can tell. You honor your Mom and that is such a great blessing! Have a blessed day! Blessings, Joanne

Shug said...

Happy Mother's day Ginny...
thank you for sharing this important part of your life with us...so much to appreciate here. You know, we really have a easy life don't we..It's realy hard to believe that our parents, our grandparents had to endure so much...
You are a Blessing to my day..
shug

S. Etole said...

I hope you are having a wonderful day ... what a wonder your mom was.

Chatty Crone said...

Well Ginny - I know her now and knowing you I am not surprised she was so wonderful and strong and a woman of courage.

Hsppy Mother's Day.

sandie

Glenda said...

Oh, Ginny, I'm so touched by your mother's story . .. thanks for sharing even though it is difficult.
What a legacy she leaves behind!

Hope you've had a wonderful Mother's Day!

Deborah said...

God Bless you Ginny. You mother was a wonderful person and strong willed too!
Thank you for sharing that part of your life with us.
xxoo
Deborah

Mary said...

One of the great beautifies of friendship is that it allows us to be ourselves and speak of what we want to. It doesn't demand we always be sparkly or on. Your mother sounds like a great lady who was dealt a rotten hand of cards but still played the game with dignity. I'm so glad you shared your memories with us. Take care, Ginny. I hope you had a great day. Blessings...Mary

Mary said...

Ginny, we are at Loon Lake - my hideout. I'm slow with correspondence because I have eye strain and can only be at the computer for a limited amount of time each sitting. The big trip comes in September. LL is about 2 hours from our house and I love it here. Hugs...Mary

hip-chick said...

A beautiful and loving tribute to your mother. And her tribute and lasting legacy to you is the way you are loving and caring to your family.

Neal said...

What a great lady...I don't know what else to say.

George said...

Thanks for sharing our mother's story. She had a strong character as well as a strong heart. She was quite a lady.
I hope you had a wonderful Mother's Day.

Kim @ Stuff could... said...

Your mother was wonderful, nice tribute!

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Ginny I was touched by your Mom's story. My parents and my husband's parents had such hardscrabble lives --they provided so much so our lives could be easier.

I hope you had a wonderful Mother's Day!

Diana said...

Ginny, you cannot keep a good woman down! lots of similarity between your mother and mine. She too died of cancer: the doctor gave her 3 months to live, so we took her everywhere we could over the next 2 months. A year and a half later,she finally passed. They are both resting now and at peace. Wonderful tribute to her, Ginny. She was fortunate to have you as a daughter.

Fred Alton said...

Ginny, I know your mother would be very happy to see you today and read your blogs. I did not say blog - but blogs. It's obvious you had good raising. You did what the Scriptures say to do and held onto the example she set for you. Glad you could share this with us.

Bobbi said...

WOW!!! What a woman your mom was! And so beautiful. Thank you for sharing this story, Ginny! It also says a lot about you, and who you are. Beautiful!!

Rose said...

What a woman she must have been...I enjoyed reading her story even though it ended sad.

Sally said...

Indeed your mom was a strong lady, and living with asthma but still able to work. Goodness. I know you miss her so much.

God bless.