Dear Mama Burkett,
I thought of you today as I twisted up my hair. You taught me this style–half bun tucked into a French twist. I remember still watching you in the basement comb your long black hair, then explain how to flip that bun over.
I thought of you on Sunday. I opened my eyes during prayer when I heard Allie giggle. Her friend was sitting in front of her, and they were making faces at one another. I had a flashback to a meeting where you told me to close my eyes by sign language.
And even as I write this, I think of those conventions as a child. You and mom were the meanest moms on the grounds. Thank you for that. We never got to sit and read. We never got to skip out on Spoons like some of our friends did. And, once we were old enough, sleeping there meant we were expected to wake up and serve.
Thank you for your service. As an adult I learned that the vegetable house at convention is no joke.
They call a pillar such a name because it is strong. It’s origin means of the nature of stone. The pillar is the support for a building, and often, when the rest of the building has crumbled away, the pillars remain. We use it to describe people like you–unmoving, supportive, and ever steadfast.
I’m grateful for the hard choices you’ve made. And the hard conversations I overheard. I am grateful for the testimonies and prayers through the years– I can’t quote them, or even recall what one was at the moment. But they were there. Steadfast. Steady. Strong. I am grateful for the friendship that you helped cultivate. And the spiritual love that you helps to fertilize seeds long ago planted.
Your (other) daughter