A lot of people always ask me why I have such a strong personality and why I’m not really shaken by a lot. Almost everyone that knows me knows I came up on the South side of Springfield (Center Blvd. whaddddup) and they know I’m the product of a single parent home.
When I was eight we flew to LA for my birthday and I remember on the flight I asked God that I die in a plane crash. Not that I had morbid thoughts at such a young age, it was that I Love my Mom so much that I wanted to die with her. I couldn’t imagine living without her and I didn’t want her to have to live without me either.
All my Life my Mom was this invincible figure. Flawless. Beautiful. Wise. Strong. Never missed a beat. She was literally everything to me. Everything.
This is the woman that didn’t make a lot of money, but still dressed like she was straight out of a magazine, drove foreign cars, and took her children on vacations all over the country (I won’t even get started on how amazing Christmas was).
So that really sets the stage for the rest…
I was in my late teens when I found out my Mom had cancer. In the stage I call an “old boy.” Throughout her entire battle I saw the type of strength that I had learned to expect from her. She never question God.
Those years made me the person I am today. The man I am today.
I remember she was in the hospital one time (one of many), and she flat lined. She was the code blue you heard over the loud speaker. She told me a few days later she was in the elevator and looked down and saw her body being worked on, then she woke up. She was in the hospital for weeks and I was living on hospital food and snacks from a Speedway gas station. At shitty as that sounds, it was a great time in my Life. More lessons being learned. My faith being tested again. I never lost faith that God would bring her through it. She was eventually discharged and had to go to an in care Hospice facility. My extended family drove and flew in to say goodbye to my Mom, but I was always there with a smile on my face. I knew it wasn’t the end, and a about a week later I was pushing her wheelchair to the car as we left. Over the next few months we had physical therapy at the house; after weeks of laying in bed her muscles had become so weak that she had to train her body to walk again. Of course, we worked hard and built her body back up.
Again, builds the legend of Lorraine Rogers in my mind. The woman that made a dollar stretch, made meals from an empty fridge, kept three kids happy and healthy (even when it took numerous jobs to do it). She literally beat death.
My path to manhood was carrying the person I saw as invincible. I realized that this person I had placed on the highest pedestal needed me during the hardest time in her Life. I was her pilar. I carried her when she had no strength. I drove her to appointment after appointment. I had the positive words when we heard more bad news from the doctors. The “burden” of caring for her was my honor. It was my passion.
Her battle started with me being a 17 year old junior in high school and ended with me being a man… a 22 year old technology analyst that would wake up at 7 for work, put in a 10 hour day, and drive to Springfield afterwards to bring her dinner and chop it up for a few hours, before driving back to Columbus.
I fear nothing because if the strongest person I’ve ever seen needed me to carry her, what could possibly break me?
“The LORD is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The LORD is the defense of my life; Whom shall I dread?”