Grandma Mary H

Grandma Mary Humphries

From birth until 4 years of age, I lived next to my grandma Mary Humphries.

She was the best friend anyone could have. 

She taught me how to pump water from her well, how to feed chickens, make apple sauce and can, strawberry jam, but most importantly she taught me how to box with my uncles boxing gloves.

On my first attempt, I hit myself in the face and fell flat on my rear end.  The second time I spun around and fell.  But she wanted me to defend myself from being hit by my mother. With all the rage built up from being abused in so many ways, from growing up, when I was thirteen I actually did it!

Grandma Mary and I would sit on the front porch and her brother, uncle Nicholas, who died in 1918, would sit and tell me of the business readings I would do for people far in the distance future. 


Among them would be baseball players, movie stars, and people who started out like me, a small town girl from Mascoutah, IL.  She and her living sister, and passed on brother, gave me the strength never to give up on who I was to be in God’s plan for this Earth, making a difference in my own way every day I live.

Whether it is on a subway in New York or going into Walmart, telling a young man not commit suicide because his brother who passed, who he was able to can see,  wanted him to be with him on the other side or going to Drum Corps celebrations at a local club and telling everyone what difference they have made by what they did since we were together 40 years ago.

She was a lady we measured ourselves against to see how tall we had grown yet none of us will ever grow as tall as her. She was definitely my first mentor and best friend never complained about pain when she climbed on her roof because my dad did not get there fast enough.

Once we moved, she fell because the neighbor lady yelled at her. With two broken hips, staying a little ways down the highway at my uncle’s house, who was a professional chicken farmer, she got scared for her baby chicks. After two months, she threw away her walker and walked down to her house, crawled up into the brooder house to take care of her chicks.

I thought she had been taken my kidnappers, but from that point on I knew I could be with her and survive anything. 

She also used to let people in her house to use the phone when their car or truck broke down. The one time, Senator Mel Carnahan and his small children and wife had a car break down.

She killed two chickens, feathered them, bagged them and boxed them. Then put apple sauce jars, strawberries, and strawberry jam in another box and apologized for not having enough for them.

I knew I had seen the man before on TV but three weeks later on his letterhead she got a thank you note with a picture of them from their family pictures like you give other families and a fifty dollar bill.

She said to me that is why some times Linda you will give your gift away for free to those who don’t have you get rewarded by those who do.  

She lived to be 96, tired and sleeping all the time. I went to the nursing home and told her I was standing up for myself, living on my own, away from my mom and I was strong because of her teaching me and that it was okay if she joined grandpa and all of our family and friends.  I told her I will be okay. 

She said I am proud of you and I love you.  When I got home, the nursing home said she called the nurse over, had her wash her face and said I have gone to see my husband my little one just told me.