“Mr. Simon wrote a heartfelt story that everyone could relate to regarding his mother,” said Kathleen Jackson, facilitator of the San Quentin Christian Creative Writing Class.
“He’s had his ups and downs and has had to make some life-changing decisions for himself,” she said.
“When he was first introduced to the Lord, he was not with it, but now you can’t run him off from God. Simon still falls down at times, but today he knows how to get back up and back in line and in fellowship with his Christian brothers, sisters, and most importantly, the Lord.”
Here’s some of what Simon wrote about his mother:
I was at a very young age when my parents divorced. I believe I was around 4 or 5 years old; I don’t know for sure. I am the youngest and only boy in my family, which consists of my mom, two sisters, and me.
There was never a male figure in our household; my dad was in and out of my life. I learned a few things from him but nothing close to what I learned from my mom.
Mama always showed and taught us respect, respect for ourselves and toward others. She taught us to be truthful and willing to extend a helping hand, looking for nothing in return but to just do it because it’s the right thing to do.
She also taught us to believe there is a God, but we were not taught how to believe in God. We did not read the Bible growing up nor did we understand or talk about God’s word, will, and ways. We would use all these clichés: ‘God don’t like ugly;’ ‘God’s going to punish for doing wrong;’ ‘God’s going to strike you down for one reason or another.’…all those mean and evil things God would do. We just did not know any better, but I can assure you we do today.
Growing up, I did not know we were poverty-stricken, if we were, because of our mom’s love and sacrifices. I did not even know what poverty was until I moved out and left home. That is also the time I began to understand my mom is a real model for what a mom is, not just a mother but a real and genuine mom.
She never turned her back on any of her kids, even when we were deep down in our drug addiction, which all three of us, at the same time, were for many years. As each of us evolved out of those trenches at separate times, my mom came to trust and believe in us once again.
As we were growing up, she taught us morals and values to carry us through life, and she knew even in our addictions that we did not forget them.
A mom who raises her child knows her child better than anyone else on God’s green earth. I can admit that my mom is far from perfect, but she is the perfect mom to me. I am truly grateful God has always shadowed over her.
That same house I was raised in is like a little piece of heaven to me: always clean, warm, inviting, and full of love because of the one who resides in it and the Spirit watching over her and home.