by Shana Allgood
My life is full of happiness, pain, and many challenges. However, I work hard every single day to live my life honorably. I am honest, dedicated, and a true friend to anyone in need. Years from now I hope to look down from Heaven at a room full of people celebrating my life. I hope that above everything else I am remembered for three very important reasons. I truly hope to hear someone say that I was a strong and independent person. Even more, I hope to hear my three daughters say I was a devoted wife and mother. Last, I hope to hear that I lived my life as a dedicated Christian.
My childhood was far from a fairytale. My mother was a drug addict. My father was an alcoholic. I learned at a very young age how to provide for myself. At age seven, I got myself out of bed, I fixed my breakfast, and I walked down to the end of the road to wait for the bus in the dark. At ten and eleven, I was left alone at night while my parents were out. I realize these are stories we hear every day. I also know that there are many people who may use these disadvantages to justify mistakes they make. I choose not to. My childhood has made me a very strong person. The fact that I was raped when I was twelve has helped mold me into the person I am today. I do not rely on anyone. I know that besides the Lord, I am all I have. I had to make a decision to overcome drunken parents, nightmares, and being shuffled from family member to family member. I made a choice to live a dignified life. I do not drink or do drugs. I also do not cheat, lie, or steal. I am above all of those things. I am strong and independent because I choose to be. I do hope everyone remembers this and that I teach by example.
I also worked hard to be a devoted wife and mother. I had my first daughter at seventeen. I was young and thought I knew everything. I could have let my grandmother raise my daughter. After all, I was in high school. However, I did not allow my mistakes to become someone else’s burden. I am so proud to say I chose to be a wonderful mother to Haven. A couple of years later, I met my husband. We have been married eight years. When I met Tommy, he was recently divorced and broke. None of that mattered to me. I stayed by his side regardless of his temporary bad luck. I am thankful I did. We later had two daughters together. Now we are a family of five. Sure, we have our problems. Money is tight. But, I will continue to provide for my family and be there for them twenty-four hours, seven days a week. I truly hope that my children will remember me as a wife and a mother who stuck with them through it all.
I try hard every day to live as a follower of the Lord. It is hard, though. There are so many temptations. I have made the decision to live a holy life, and I will continue to do so. I do anything for my family and friends. I give to the homeless man on the corner. Then, I watch others roll up their windows and pretend he is not there. I love my life, and I am proud of who I am. I have the Lord to thank for my confidence. I am His child, and I want to make Him proud. Therefore, I spend every day reading and studying the Bible. I spend every night teaching the Bible to my children. I am quite confident that one day I will look down from heaven and hear others say that I was a dedicated Christian.
I realize that when I die people will remember various details about me. But I hope that everyone will remember everything I have overcome. I hope they will remember how strong I am. I also hope they will take a moment to reflect on me as a wife and mother. My family is everything to me. Most of all, I hope they can remember my asking if they have read their Bible today. After all, the Lord gave us life, and I hope to spend eternity with Him.
"Remembering Me" was written for Dr. Dina Rhoden’s ENGL 1101 class during spring 2004 semester by Shana Allgood, then a freshman Nursing major.