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Thanks for the Memories

(ROCKWALL, TX — July 1, 2018) The Bible says to give honor to those who deserve honor.  I will attempt to do that with my words today.  One hundred years ago today, my Mother, Pauline Cadenhead Hays, was born in Comanche County, Texas.  She was second from the youngest of nine brothers and sisters.  ALL of her family has proceeded her in death except for my generation of cousins.

Mother was born during WWI, lived through 17 presidents, WWII, Korean War, Vietnam, Desert Storm, Iraqi Freedom and the Afghan Conflict. My husband was listing things that had been invented during her life time, and the list covered several pages, not to mention the computer I’m typing on and the cell phone that’s buzzing, reminding me that it’s my Mother’s birthday.

I enjoyed watching her Friday as she saw faces of my cousins visiting for her party. She seemed to be present… she seemed to be processing the words they were saying, as they were calling her, “Aunt Pean.”  The music playing during the PowerPoint pictures was, “Thanks for the Memories,” the song that became Bob Hope’s theme song.

That was her era.  Jimmy and Tommy Dorsey, Count Basie and his orchestra, Benny Goodman, Harry James, Glen Miller… what they called The Big Band Era.

Mother endured Daddy being gone for three years during WWII, trauma from a near fatal car crash, the oil boom, loss of parents and all of her siblings.  She was very close to her family and loved them each to heaven.

I mostly enjoyed watching the Broadmoor staff seeing Mother’s pictures on the PowerPoint.  I was reminded that they get to know our residents most often near the end of their lives.  They don’t know what has brought them through to this point… this 100-year point.  They were fascinated to see her more physically active times and relationships not based on their care of her, but for her care of and about others.  I think the pictures must have been for them.  I think the pictures blessed them.  They already love her and care for her so effectively, but now they know that precious smile has been there a very long time.

Each cousin told stories of Mother. They honored her with their presence, driving long distances.  Their memories of her will have to do for today.  Hers are locked away for safe keeping.  Gratefully, God has her heart.  Even though Mother might not remember asking Jesus to be her Savior, He remembers.  He won’t forget.

Thank You, Lord, for remembering.

That’s a good word.

By Paula Lively. Paula is a Volunteer Chaplain at Broadmoor Medical Lodge in Rockwall. She is a VERY retired RN who loves serving the residents at Broadmoor. She and her husband, Fred, have lived in Rockwall for 15 years.

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