Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee… I tilt my head to my right shoulder, listening… watching, studying… life; everything that is life; everything around me. I wonder, I think, I feel, care, love; even hate, dislike……… I grieve, no matter what I do; no matter how happy, sad. I go on with life knowing my son, my only child is gone… forever. Not only do I grieve for myself… my heart is big enough to grieve for the pain of others… I grieve for you, too.
‘Yeah, It’s One Of Those Things; Things Like That Happen
By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee
The little boy sat quietly by his mother. She sat beside him in relief… relief that her son was alive. She had relaxed enough so, that she could drink her bottle of water.
I watched as a woman walked up to the two; she reached down, drew the little boy to her huge bosom. Tears streamed from her eyes as she held the child. She let go of him, reached for the boy’s mother; began hugging her tightly. I never knew the relationship between them… maybe she was a grandparent, teacher… ?
What drew my attention, as I sat with tears streaming down my own face, was…. the little boy. I always look where no one else is looking… I notice things other people don’t. So… I got to see this little boy being ‘normal’… after what he’d just survived. I smiled at the same time as my heart cried for them.
The little boy looked up at the tv camera, went back to his little boy world… took his little hand, began to wipe first his right cheek where the lady had placed her wet kisses.
He went on to wipe the other cheek; then, he began wiping his whole face all at once to get rid of the ‘wet’…. As I cried inside, I laughed at the same time.
It was beautiful; bittersweet… the little boy was being a little boy after surviving a massive EF 4 tornado that hit his school. He was on the news… he didn’t notice; he was just a little boy.
Yesterday, a massive EF4 tornado with winds from 166-200 miles, struck Moore, Oklahoma. Moore is located near I-35 South… you can drive through Oklahoma City on I-40; drop down on 35, be in Moore in just minutes.
I know someone who was traveling through Oklahoma City, Oklahoma just less than a hour before the tornado struck. I noticed while we talked on our cellphones… he kept mentioning the sky. The sky looks bad; it looks like a tornado. I felt … alarm.
He was aware while he was driving in Oklahoma… (yesterday)… that another tornado could strike at any time. Not only that, he had just driven through Shawnee, Oklahoma where a tornado had struck the day before! He described to me on the cellphone what he was seeing as he drove through.
He saw big houses torn to shreds; trees split apart. Cars, pickups were overturned in people’s yards… their homes destroyed. Everything tossed… mangled. I wonder ‘why’?
I’m told I have no right to … question ‘why’? If I want to wonder ‘why’… I will. I realize that I won’t know the answer to ‘why’… no more than I’ll know the answer as to ‘why’ my only child, my son… Tommy, collapsed at the beach while playing with my grandson… to die.
‘Why’? Oh… don’t tell me I don’t have the right to question… I don’t feel you have the right to say that to me. I turn my back on you… I can ask while at the same time… know that my question can’t be answered. I’m intelligent enough to know that.
You, or nobody else, even the smartest person in the world can… tell me ‘why’. All ‘you can say is what you think; what you’ve been taught to believe’. You don’t know ‘why’… I have my own beliefs just as you do. I don’t think yours are better than mine… or mine better than yours. Do you know what I honestly think?
I think that as long as we ‘believe’ in a good way, and our hearts feel it’s right… I think that most important. More important than not believing at all.
As long as good things stem from our beliefs, make good things happen for ourselves, others… life is good. Love, caring for each other. Don’t even argue with me… that’s my belief… I’m sticking to it. I don’t have to defend, nor debate my beliefs. I respect yours… you will respect mine.
Shawnee, Oklahoma is only 40 miles from Moore, Oklahoma. He spent the night in the western part of Tennessee last night. He woke up to a storm early this morning. He got up, began driving to be in North Carolina, tonight.
I am watching the news on tv… in 10 minutes they will begin showing more in detail what has happened. What I see touches the very core of my heart… my soul.
What bothers me is when you tell someone about such… out of their dumb-ass mouths are these words: ‘yeah, things like that happen; it’s one of those things’. How callous people have become ‘today’… no feelings left for anyone other than their own lives.
They can’t see any further than as far as their hands can reach…. dense-minded. Uncaring, unfeeling…. but… if you want to see them go into action… let something happen to one of their children; or to their life.
You will see screaming, gnashing of teeth… crying, whining, b___…. you’d better listen to ‘them’. Only if something dared to ‘touch their lives’… would they care. They only care about themselves… I ‘watch when it happens to them’….
I pay attention to their reactions. I am holding my head over to the side… watching through puzzled eyes, studying…. to see how such a person will react. I want to know one thing…. ‘when it happens to ‘them’… is it really… just one of those things; things like that happen’, to them?
I say what I think a lot of times; I say what I see, feel or think. I don’t think people like it ‘every time’ I do it. I don’t mean to hurt… I just wonder aloud; or …. if a person has mistreated me in the past… and the next time is nice to me, trying to impress someone else… I ‘call them on it’… I don’t play games… yet, I just lied… I have to play the game of life…. just like we all have to.
We can’t be 100%… honest. Don’t you agree? Would you be lying… if you said you never told a lie? We all know… we all have to lie at times in our life… you know, those ‘little, white lies’. It’s uncomfortable to think about it, I know. I feel the same way.
I realize some people have the world by the tail; have all the money, material things they could desire… they aren’t going to care about anything other… than themselves.
They are going to b____, cry, whine about ‘how hard life is; how much they have to go through’. They have everything to make their life happy… but, they’ve screwed it up by getting an addiction… how can life be good anymore? ‘I reckon it would make you whine, cry, b_____; moan, groan how bad your life is’.
I think their problem is that they feel bad all the time; their health has changed from all the bad things they’ve done to their body ‘in the name of seeking happiness, pleasure’. I know I could be wrong… we ‘know’ those things don’t hurt people… it’s got to be something else.
They become bored with having everything; quit appreciating all they have… become alcohol, drug, sex, smoke-addicted… among other things. When they go too far with that; they become bored again… they have no where to go, have anything to do anymore for entertainment.
It makes one think they will to do ‘something crazy’…. next. Something that make them feel again… get the adrenaline flowing; God, to see what ‘feeling good feels like’… again.
They’ve got everything in the world… only they can’t feel, love, care any more. They have numbed themselves… and can easily say when something ‘bad’ happens to others…. ‘yeah, it’s just one of those things; things like that happen’.
Think of all the lives…. the people they come in contact with during that time… God, think of the feelings they’ve hurt, stepped on because ‘they didn’t feel good’… they are ‘too washed out’; they can’t be bothered by other ‘mere people’.
In their minds, maybe they’ve ‘become God’….. so, they strike out with their own unhappiness, their own unwell feelings; they make anyone who comes in contact with them… unhappy, devastated from their nasty words, their uncaring.
They begin to thrive on their power to … create storms in others’ lives… ‘Watch this!” That can bring a little grin to their faces! How do I know? I’ve seen this all my life…. and…. more. You wouldn’t believe… but, I know you do. You’ve either done it… watched it happen to others; or have been a victim.
What’s so bad is… when these people are in management of a company; when they are a ‘boss’ over people. Maybe it’s the dominant spouse in a marriage; the one everyone has to listen to… to obey. You know… the ‘head of household’ person.
People ‘under them’ are in a position always… to ‘be knocked down’ when that person doesn’t feel good; or his family life is awful. So, they just go ‘screw up Billy-Bob’s life by talking harsh to him; make his job/life hard for him’… when Billy Bob’s life is already hell.
Maybe Billy Bob has had a heart attack; his wife committed adultery; maybe his child just died. Maybe Billy-Bob’s health is bad, he is trying to make a living for his own family the best way he knows how… and has to ‘eat ___’ along the way, to survive.
A family sometimes, never knows what a man goes through to feed their hungry mouths, to dress their spoiled asses; make them look good so, other people will ‘think they are somebody’. You know… make it possible for them to ‘keep up with the Jones’… ‘dress to impress’.
The man suffers so, that a family can live, eat good. They never know the grief he goes through. Or… the mistreatment another man does to him… he has to swallow his pride, keep from whipping that man’s a___… so, he can keep his job.
His boss says, ‘yeah, I know how it feels… it’s just one of those things’. How in the ____ does ‘he know how it feels’? He has never suffered the loss of anything in his life; he doesn’t know how it is for the average man to struggle not for himself… but, for others; his family.
What’s so bad is… when half the family doesn’t deserve all he goes through. The wife is dressing in beautiful clothes on his hard-earned money to go sneak out to do things she shouldn’t; his kids are taking advantage… never giving that poor man a second thought. They all are focusing on ‘pleasure; what makes them feel good’. The father is thinking all along what he’s going to do, to make his family’s life better.
Sometimes, when I write… I let my mind absorb other things as they happen… and incorporate it into my stories. This began solely about the tornado, and its victims. All I can say… that’s ‘me’… when I’m writing for my blog.
Since then, I heard some very callous remarks made about the victims of the Moore, Oklahoma. It angered me to know, see how uncaring, unfeeling, cold another person can be… they can’t even imagine. Their minds ‘are too thick’…. you can’t get through to them.
I would love for Victoria Fairchild to step up… shake up some of these people’s lives. (She is my main character in my ongoing series… update: I’m in process of writing book two… The Saga Of Victoria Fairchild).
We all wish for characters like Victoria Fairchild… she will step where even the devil is afraid to step. She would deal an eye for an eye… a tooth for a tooth. She would make sure someone learned a lesson or two in their life… ‘if’ they didn’t, then…. she’d simply do what she had to do; do what it’d take… to make things alright for the victims. No matter what……………………….
Don’t we all wish for someone like her… to take up for, defend all the weaker people, animals in this world? Characters like this would ‘do anything it took’… to make the world good. That’s why I always say… we need bad in the world just as well, as good.
This is strictly a ‘Gloria opinion’… and I have lots of them; I hold my ground on each unless… you can show me differently. I’m very open-minded. You think what you want to… I’m not going to try to change your minds… I respect you.
Not only that… I always hope you are open-minded to learn… just as I am. I’m not so, opinionated, that I can’t … budge. I’m not so ‘feet planted firmly on the ground’, that I can’t move. I’m not going to let pride ever stand in my way again… make someone think ‘I know everything’… so, that I don’t learn new things. Teach me! I will listen; just don’t ‘push your beliefs on me’……..
Teach me in a kind, good way… I don’t respond well to negative people. Nor… do I listen to them at all. I don’t have the patience to waste my time… you and I aren’t going to ‘see eye to eye’… so, go your way, and I’ll go mine. I won’t waste your time either.
See, life taught me this. It taught me so, much from seeing things, hearing things, knowing things from a child up… to be like this. Things people protect little children from… things a young person should never know, even be aware of… things we’ve learned as we become older… that we can’t change, hurt us. Life is like this…. you know it is.
What is that old saying? I’m always good for getting old sayings ‘backwards’ (maybe I try to change them to be ‘my’ way :))). Let’s see, I think it is something like this: Lord, please help me to accept the things I can’t change. I am grinning… I’m wondering if I said it right or not… I’m thinking to myself… there are some things I don’t/wont accept… but, pretend to…. always looking for a way to change them… all in a quiet way.
To be ‘Gloria’…. you either like me, or you don’t like me… or sit on the fence post all your life… doing both, changing your mind constantly; trying to decide. Or… you go on, live your own life, ignore me… and I do the same… ignore ‘you’. You never know I’m there; I am a quiet person… private. I mind my own business; you won’t mind my business. Life is like this… you know it is.
Oh, to be ‘you’… same thing. I think just like you. I either like you, don’t like you… or am in a constant state of liking you one minute, disliking you the next… or, never knowing if I like you. You don’t have anything on me. Life is like this, too… you know it is. :)))
I say don’t waste time… I’m nobody but, me. I care, love, feel for people… animals. I live real life; I know what it is to struggle… I’ve known how it feels to be ‘rich’… been there, done that… oh, I wish I was again! :))) Maybe ‘one day’…. we all never give up hope, no matter what. That means ‘you’, too. Anything ‘really is possible’… you know I’m right.
The elderly woman stood there, speaking to the reporter. I watched her eyes… they were seeing something we could only guess at. She was speaking about her experience surviving the tornado.
She said that through the years, it was known what to do ‘if’ a tornado was coming. That was to go to her bathroom… she did. The elderly woman, and her dog went into the bathroom… where she sat on the stool hugging her dog.
The tornado hit, the stool began to move; she was falling all around. She said, “I never lost consciousness”. When all became still… her dog was no longer in her arms. I saw grief in her eyes of shock at what she’d just come through… my heart twisted in my chest. Tears filled my eyes, obscuring my vision.
The words she said next, twisted my heart a little more; I just closed my eyes, I couldn’t see anyway. This grieving mother felt pain for her… she turned toward the rubble of her home, said…. ‘he’s in there, somewhere’. Her dog was… dead. His body lay somewhere in that pile of… her home.
Her eyes… her eyes. My shoulders shook as I cried for her; her little dog was gone. I don’t know this… but, it could have been all the family she had left. If it were me… I only have my husband, and our Pups left in this world.
I sat here, imagining her feelings ‘right this moment’… oh God, the pain I felt. I already know how it feels to lose my only child; I know how it feels to lose at least (I quit counting) 19 loved ones… the very family I loved most in my whole life… they are… gone).
I’ve lost everything several times in my life; the last being a house fire that took all our belongings. I’ve suffered many ‘bad’ things in my life… I know a lot about ‘bad things happening’. Don’t feel sympathy, sorrow for me… I’m very strong now. I’m like the redwood trees that stand battered, beaten from past storms. I lift my limbs up to the sky to embrace the sunshine… life. I love life!
I know how it feels to lose my beloved dogs; even cats… I’m not a cat-lover but, I watched through time the feral cats I came to know, love, feed… die. You wouldn’t believe the pain I felt… they each had become a part of my life. When I love an animal, person with my heart… I truly love with my… very heart. If I love ‘you’… there’s never any doubt in your mind that, I do. If I don’t…. well, that’s another story….. :)))
I’ve known grief, lived grief for so long… I think it’s a part of ‘me’… I know it only too well. Okay… okay… I hear ‘you saying’…. “yeah,its just one of those things that happens; things like that happen”. Guess what?
You don’t even know what’s happened in my life to make me grieve… you won’t say that to me… and get by with it. I don’t discuss it ‘in person’ with anyone… anyway. I’m not going to push my feelings, life ….on you. Never have, never will at this late day, time.
My private life is …. mine… I don’t share it with anyone. I do talk about everything else…. here. Sometimes, I do write private things from my life…. but, don’t try to ‘talk’ to me about them.
I’ll say this… when you lose your child; it’s a grief unlike any other. It was almost ‘the end’ of me…
The elderly woman stood there as the reporter spoke to her; asked her questions in a caring voice. Her eyes…. I heard excited voices! Something was moving, making some of the rubble move… “Bowsy!”
The woman began calling her dog by his name, as people lifted pieces of debris off him. He began struggling to get out. The elderly woman was going toward him, calling his name; her hands reaching out for him. Her precious dog was… alive! Now… did you feel how wonderful that was… to learn her dog was alive?
My heart didn’t twist watching that drama unfold… it ‘flip-flopped’ in happiness. I was glad no one could see me… I cried tears of happiness for that elderly woman. No matter that she didn’t have anything else in this world… she had her dog. Dog-lovers… are like that.
To you, and I… we know how much it means for good things to come from bad things. We are happy when we see good things happen. We wish for good things to happen to us, everyone. I told you above about ‘those people’ who just say …’yeah, it’s one of those things; things like that happen’. They wish only for good things to happen ‘in their lives’.
They wouldn’t care… unless it affected ‘their life, their loved ones’. You think like me… they wouldn’t… but, they’d ‘scream like little girls’… if their child died; their pet died; their spouse died; their parent, sibling, loved one… died.
‘You’….. would be the ‘cold, uncaring person’…. if ‘you’ didn’t feel for them; never mind them telling you when tragedy strikes in your life… ‘yeah, it’s one of those things; things like that happen’.
Oh… the person traveling through Oklahoma was… Skip! Only people who wish good things for others would care about this.
I know that people who would say, ‘yeah, it’s one of those things that happen; things like that happen’…. wouldn’t have cared.
- Moore, Oklahoma tornado May 20, 2013 (earthsky.org)
- Devastating scenes in Oklahoma City area (cnn.com)
- Photos of the devastating tornado that hit Moore, Oklahoma (doobybrain.com)