Willett is November’s senior of the month

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I had no idea when I was writing my column for last month and speaking of my mother I would be using my mom as senior of the month for November. I had already asked a little lady to be my next celeb for November and she consented. She understands waiting because like Ms. Ilda Warren she has a lot of moons behind her. She is also another caring and loving mother for me.
Actually the plans were to go visit Mom on Wednesday taking the Enterprise with me so she could read my October article. I always sent or took them to her to read. I was saddened when I got the phone call that Mom had been admitted on the early Tuesday morning with internal bleeding. The following two weeks were not cheerful but yet happy that Mom did not suffer.
My mother Dorothy L. Coffey Willett was born and raised in Fleming County. Mom has told many a story about growing up. She tells of times with only corn bread and milk for meals. How hard it was to grow and keep what you grow. Most of the time it was eats right out of the garden or off the vine. One pair of socks and maybe an apple or a banana was your Christmas gift. You made your own clothes and or swapped with family. Of course your shoes you wore out when you were small. In the summer time one did not have flip flops or sandals, you felt the ground.
Mom went through 12 years of school with good grades all the time. Mom on occasion would boast of her spelling abilities. She won the Fleming County spelling bee and went on to the state level I believe when she was in the eighth grade. She was always in the top of the class.
She had an opportunity for college as she was awarded a full paid scholarship to Berea College but she turned it down. This college at the time and still is a very prestigious college. We all know from stories that very few women pursued college in the 1940’s. Reason number one being “I am in love and I am going to get married and have babies”.  I can recall that white picket fence story too.
Mom went to work instead right after high school. She got a job with Ma Bell Company as a telephone operator. Now that does go back a few years I kid you not. Dad had been with the phone company starting at the bottom with climbing the poles. They dated, got married twice (first time they ran off or so the story goes), and then started the family. My mother and father had a family of eight girls and six boys. They had 50 plus years of marriage.
There were times when we would all be as a family in a restaurant, at the movies, at a park and people would stare at such a large family. They would tell Mom and Dad “such well behaved children”. We were taught and knew we had better behave when we were on an outing. I can remember several times people would stop and count as we would walk by. Only when we moved to Lebanon and Loretto did we stop getting counted. There were families here larger than ours.
That is one reason I chose to speak of and about Mom because of it being Thanksgiving month. I am so thankful and grateful that I was blessed with the many years I had a mother to go to, to be able to talk to about anything, to have had her unconditional love, her support for or with me for anything that was lying on my plate. Once when I was having a personal problem in my marriage I finally talked to her about it and she says “Charlie, (her nickname for me) I know that”. I guess I looked or sounded surprised at her response so she said “you can’t fool mothers”.
 Growing in our teen years Mom would tell us she had eyes in the back of her head. Sometimes I really believed she did have a set covered back there. I know today experience is the best set of eyes anyone can have.
Once I thought she did not like my kids because they were being mischievous. She acted as though she was mad or upset so I asked her what was wrong and she told me “once my Mother told me kids were for the young and today I know my not feeling well is why she used to say that when she came to visit with us”. There are so many things my mother said or told me that today I know or can relate to what she was saying just like she had to find out.
The biggest shocker I remember was when Mom (in her early forties) and Dad came one weekend to visit the kiddos in Kentucky that she had taken the habit of smoking. She said her girls smoked and she wanted “to fit in”. Of course that led to conversation about the time they caught me smoking and blowing it out my bedroom window.
My mom and dad after retirement used to load their RV and spend time in Florida like a lot of folks do. I can still see my Mom on the first trip down and back home. Mom was one of those who kept that dress as long as she could. She left in a dress but came back home with a pair of knee knockers on. She said it was warm in Florida and she decided to see what it was like to puts on pants.
Remember when in the 60s women were burning their bras well my mother had said she would fit right in. For some reason my mother never ever wore a bra. She always said they were uncomfortable. She would definitely not be offended that I am telling this on her. She would have told you if the opportunity had arisen.
I have been told for a few years now that I was very fortunate to still have my mother in my presence. I now understand why those had said that to me. So for those who still have their mothers with you enjoy because time is short with them. I think about some of the stories and times with Mom and some of them seem like yesterday.
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On Sunday, Dec. 4 from 2 until 5 we are having the annual Marion County Senior Christmas Party at the KC Hall.  There will be music, games, door prizes, Bingo, and eats. Cost is $2 and a non perishable food item to be donated to The Caring Place. Call (270) 699-9898 or (270) 692-6591 to put your name on the list. We will need to know an approximate amount for fixing the eats.
Gobble gobble and a happy Thanksgiving to all.