Normally, I don't get involved with giveaways. But this is the 40th anniversary since my mother's death. She died on April 28th, 1972 in a fatal car accident. She and my aunt were killed instantly, we were told.
They were in the back seat of a volkswagon van, you know, the cool kind that hippies painted up with all sorts of neat day-glow graffiti and wacky designs. Only this was no day-glow volkswagon van. It was a death-trap for my mom and aunt. And years later, after it was discontinued because others lost their lives, we found out why. Those vans had a high center of gravity. They tipped over and rolled easily.
That is what happened when my uncle, who was driving, had to break because someone cut him off (two-lane highway and the guy was passing the van). Well, when my uncle breaked, the van swerved and tipped and rolled, throwing my mom and aunt out of the van. Those were the days before mandatory seat-belts.
Years later looking back, I miss and love her and my aunt. But if any good can come out of a tragedy, and I believe it can, my brother married my best friend who was at the funeral. He didn't even look at her before. And the product of their marriage is the blessing of my two nephews who are now grown men and my grandniece who is eleven, going on sixteen, very brilliant and absolutely beautiful. But then, I'm a proud aunt and grandaunt.
Tragedy birthed blessings. But I must tell you that I have tremendous faith and belief in God, as did my mom and my aunt who were solid Christians. It was my faith that sustained me through the period of her loss. When my mom's teaching career ended with her death, mine began. I taught HS English, mentored college student teachers, went on to get my Master's Degree and my Ph.D. and discovered my writing talents during the dissertation process.