Cumberland Times-News

May 8, 2008

Hear your mom's story on Mother's Day

David Sandvick, Columnist

My mom was a child of the Depression. No, she wasn't sad all the time, she grew up in the 1920's during the great economic depression.

Being the oldest of four, she dropped out of school when she was 12 years old and went to work cleaning houses to earn money for the family. She claims that their family survived the tough times thanks to bean soup. It must be true because she sure did love that stuff and seemed to cook it often when my sister and I were growing up.

She spoke of ice skating along the canal from Cumberland to Green Spring to stay with other family when there wasn't enough food for everyone. On another occasion, she helped her younger brother stumble home after he found an uncle's moonshine still up in the hills.

My mom spoke of her childhood with a fondness that suggested she would like to do it again in spite of the hardships she endured prior to becoming a teenager. I still can't help but feel for this little girl who had to grow up so fast into a provider, assistant mother and independent thinker. She had so little time to enjoy the carefree years of childhood.

Every mom has a story to tell. A story of a childhood with its own ups and downs. A childhood filled with hardships, happy times, and sweet memories. This Mother's Day, may I suggest that you spend some time with your mom and talk about her childhood and special memories growing up. Find out her life experiences that made her the woman that she is and that still put a sparkle in her eyes.

I'm glad my mom had a chance to tell her story. I'm glad I know that she ice skated the canal one winter in order to survive. I'm glad I know what made her the woman that she was because it helped to make me the man that I am. Happy Mother's Day.

David Sandvick is the pastor of First English Baptist Church in Frostburg.