My First Influence

Today is International Womens Day, so I would like to tell you about the first woman who influenced me. My Grandmother, Lela Mae Hammond Testerman, who was nothing short of amazing. They say I am a lot like her, I tend to think I am, she really didn’t enjoy cooking all that much. She had a few signature dishes that everyone loved, if there are any Testermans out there that have her chicken and dressing recipe, I totally need that. She had a sweet tooth, and an insatiable appetite for hollywood gossip. Oh and the romance novels, I totally get that guilty pleasure from her.
She was fierce in her love for her family, she would defend any of us to the death, if she didn’t like what was happening, well denial was the word of the day. She taught me how to walk in a hoop skirt because she was convinced the fashion would make a comeback. She once told me that I didn’t have to be so smart because I was pretty, she was not joking. To this day I see that point of view, I see it in the world, I now understand what she was talking about. However, let me tell you something, my grandmother was smart, and funny, and she married well. Not in money terms, in character terms, she totally knew how to pick ’em as the saying goes. She was a good Christian woman, who placed her faith in God and would tell me she was sure everything would work out in the end or come out in the wash. She was my best friend, when I moved away from her I would write her long letters, I am talking 10 pages long, filled with all of my girlish hopes and dreams. She never once put me down for those, she would write me back telling me about her days, the church and Burt and Lonnie’s latest antics in the National Enquirer.
I miss my Grandma terribly, I know I will see her again, I am keeping a mental log of what has happened to her favorite celebrities so I can catch her up when I see her again.

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