My mother has spent the last few years of her life adjusting to a rare blood disease. A blood disease that they said would alter her way of life and eventually kill her. They told her it would be painful, it would require random surgeries, and that it would take her away from her family. They told her it was incurable that the closest doctor was hundreds of miles away and that she needed to act quickly. They told her all this, but she accepted none of it.
She chose life. She has chosen to spend every day doing all she can for her family and others with a smile on her face. Her smile is breathtaking. It gives life. She smiles through the blood, through the treatments, through the surgeries. She smiles through the days that seem like they are her last. She works for a nonprofit helping families find assistance with housing and food as well as bettering themselves in the workforce and everyday life. She is a powerful evangelist in the church and Sunday school teacher as well. She’s a mother of 2 and a grandmother of 2 and she executes every detail of those jobs perfectly.
There isn’t another woman in this world that I have seen mirror her strength and character even in a situation like terminal illness. She deserves the world and only wants others salvation and time with her family.
Lela Rankins is the epitome of Maya Angelo’s Phenomenal Woman. And I am honored to call her my mother.