I often hear people say that they want to have children so they can leave a legacy. While yes, leaving a legacy is important, it is even more important that we recognize how legacies are truly created. It is more than just having children. It is what you do with those children that make a difference. Legacies are built and shaped by those who are deemed worthy, respectable, and esteemed. In short, legendary. Who is more legendary than Big Momma?
From the care of the tender hands that rocked you to sleep, to the strength of those same hands when you needed a little bit of discipline, a big momma has shaped our lives in one way or another. Contrary to popular belief, a big momma isn’t just a grandma. To some, it can be an aunt, a cousin, and at times even a sister. You see what makes a big momma, is not age or appearance. It is the qualities, values, and heart that make her who she is. In a time where it seems family values are slowly slipping away, it seemed necessary to recognize the legend behind a history of family legacies.
Recently, I attended the funeral of a dear cousin, who passed away due to complications with leukemia. While our hearts were heavy, something happened at that moment. As I began to look around the church, I saw dozens of people who had been touched and influenced by this woman. I listened to stories of her life, the person that she was, the people she took care of, and the compassion she had for others. It was then that I realized, that I was witnessing the funeral of a legend. Here was a woman who had created a life that was legendary in how she lived and how she served. In her short 46 years on this earth, my dear sweet cousin had already personified all of the traits that we appreciate in big momma.
So, what makes big momma legendary?
A big momma’s heart is one of the greatest traits about her. This is one of the largest and greatest traits about big momma. In today’s society it seems that many people are only about themselves. This behavior has caused many problems in the family unit. While the world may focus on self, big momma reminds us of the need to operate collectively. Big momma isn’t just about her children; she’s about your children, their children, the neighbors children, everybody’s children! She recognizes it takes a village. Collective mindsets create a unit, and that unit is called family!
Just when it seems like the entire world has forgotten about you, you look up and there she is! I’ve heard enough rap songs and watched enough movies to know that when it comes to black folks, loyalty is everything! Nobody is more loyal than big momma! She’s the first to come running when you call, the only person that will slide you ten dollars when no one’s looking, the first person to hold your hand, and the last person to let you down!
Honesty is the best policy, and no one knows this like big momma! She will tell it like it is even when you don’t want to hear it! There is no such thing as a yes man when it comes to her! Although the truth may hurt at times, it is good to have someone honest in your corner. It may not be what you want to hear, but often times it is what you need.
She leads by example
This is perhaps the most important shaping trait of any big momma. She lives the life she proclaims. She exhibits her love through her actions. She fiercely protects. She shows strength without complaint. She is a teacher, a lover, a fighter, a motivational speaker; she is all of these things and more. She leads by example day after day.
Who is the big momma in your life? Whoever she may be, do something to honor her on today! Most importantly remember that to create a legacy, you must first be one! Many people have children but it takes a special person to create a legacy. Thanks, Big Momma!
Written By Michaela Phelps, Staff Writer, #mygirlsquad