When I was five years old we moved from Alabama to Indiana and one of the first families we met were Nell and Leonard from Kentucky along with their son Glenn.
Nell was like a mom in the beginning helping keep Glenn and I under control, and later a friend, then as time went on when I didn't have a mother figure she resumed that roll.
Last week when my super dooper cell phone rang and Nell's name came up I thought it was a little late in the evening for her to call. We normally talked about once a month and there were a few notes and letters in between over the years, but most of those phone calls were during the day, on the weekends, or right after I got off work.
I answered the phone and immediately heard Glenn's voice and knew something wasn't quite right.
Nell passed away on June 1, with complications in her lungs. She wasn't a smoker but lived with a smoker the biggest portion of her life. She would have been 82 on her birthday later this month.
Leonard had passed away years ago and she had remarried but they no longer lived together but she had Glenn and his children looking out for her.
She loved me that I know, and as I told Glenn, he not only lost his mother but I lost the only person in the world who thought I was perfect. I'm sure she really didn't think I could do no wrong it just didn't matter to her because she loved me right or wrong but chose to believe that I was perfect.
She gave me confidence and let me tell her all my troubles. Most of the time we talked like old friends about all the people we knew. She never tired of telling me about the little blond hair girl with the red sweater that took her heart away. The little girl she never had. Boy could she ever stick up for me. Once I asked her what kind of a child I was. "Oh sweetheart you were so good."
Yeah that was Nell always a kind word for everyone. I will miss her so much.
Yet I know she was tired. The last time we talked she was down and it was tough getting her to laugh at one of my silly escapades. She said "I'm tired and just don't feel well anymore."
I'm very thankful she was in my life and I will always remember the soft way she spoke and that in her eyes, I was perfect.