Stella Batson


As far back as I can remember I had dreams of “someday”. I use to look in Sears Catalog and cut out the pictures of all the models and show them to everyone who would listen, and tell them that “this is what I am going to be like “someday”. Our house was very close to the road where people would make a shortcut going to their work in the mills. I would sit on the front swing porch and think “I don’t want to be like that when I grow up.” A lot of times they would be talking loud, laughing, and sometimes cursing. I was no older than six, but I knew the difference. Every Sunday, Annie Ruth and I would go to Sunday School. My Uncle Charlie and his youngest son, Jake, would ring the church bell at 10:00 a.m. All the churches ran their bell at ten a.m. on Sundays. Uncle Charlie would let me try to ring the bell but it would pull me up and he would have to pull me down. It was fun anyway. Mother never went to church with us, except the day Annie and I were baptized. I had made arrangement with Miss Mary Johnson, who played the piano before going into our Sunday school classes. She was our godmother when we were baptized. I think she probably helped mother get us admitted to the orphanage. I remember on Mother’s Day, Annie and I would wear a red rose from the rose bush in our yard. With mother taking time to say our prayers with us when she was not working, and teaching us things like The Lord’s Prayer, The Ten Commandments, and prayers from our pray book, and Bible Stories, we became very aware

of the importance of God in our lives. If God lets me live long enough, I want to write a book and call it “I KnowHe Paved My Way”. Desires of my heart have been granted to me, and only God knew what they were. Mother would travel with my sisters and me back and forth from Lousiana. I adored my daddy. He was very soft-spoken and never criticized or corrected me in front of anyone. When I was six years old, my mother left my daddy for the last time. They met while he was in the Army stationed at Fort Brag Army Base. I think my mother just couldn’t live so far away from her roots and he was the same about his. The last time I saw him, he was crying, standing outside the train, and I was crying on the inside of the train with my hands on the window that was open. He promised me that he would see me Christmas. It was during the depression and mother had to work and our grandmother took care of us. I think mother took Marie with her because she is about five years younger than Annie Ruth and me. Anyway, Annie Ruth and I could go and do anything we wanted just so long as Annie Ruth was with me. My grandmother would always say to me everyday, “You take good care of Annie. She would always remind me that the Lord was looking at me. I was never to leave Annie Ruth at school and walk home without her. One day I had to stay in after school (probably for talking) and Annie Ruth didn’t think about waiting for me. When I got out of school, my deaf grandmother was waiting for


PAPER Clips | ISSUE NO. 43

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