What a special day. I spoke to several book clubs at the Lincolnton Cultural Center. A beautiful old turn-of-the-century building that sits in the middle of town. These book clubs had all read Southern Fried Women. It's a thrill walking into a room full of people that are there because they want to hear what you have to say and ask questions about the stories that moved them the most.
I spoke for a good 30 minutes, a speech about "Mama" and about my religious upbringing. It's a lot of fun making folks laugh. I never thought of myself as a humorist or a comedian, but my audience did their share of laughing ... and that's a good thing when it's supposed to be funny. Since Mother's Day is around the corner, I thought it was appropriate.
Because, after all, my mama was one funny woman. She still is. I love to tell stories about her church experiences ... laid out and glued to the floor. An emotional Pentecostal woman, Mama spent a lot of time "slain in the spirit." This one time my little sister looked up at the sign over the altar, "Come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." We were sitting on the front pew, as usual, waiting for Mama to finish communing with the Lord. Anyway, my little sister looks up and me and says, "Do you think we wore her out?" It's a moment I'll never forget. We still laugh telling that story.
My speech is full of homespun love and memories, ones that stir the thoughts of my listeners. The response has been overwhelming. I was thrilled today when one of the ladies came up to me afterward and said, "I forgot the time, where I was, and everything around me! I could've listened to you all day, you are a real storyteller."
That's when it hit me. I am a storyteller. That's my calling.
I've said it often. I even blogged about, talked about it, I've called myself a storyteller for quite some time. But today, someone I didn't know, out of the blue, confirmed it for me.
I didn't need to get slain in the spirit to realize it. I just needed a sweet little lady to tell me.
A special day, indeed.
Blessings to you and yours,