God has blessed me with six children. I have four boys and two girls. When William and I first got married, we were dirt poor. I mean really poor. As more children came into our family, we continued to push them to take care of each other and to get as much education as they could. Through instilling these values, my children have always been there for each other. I have never had to ask them twice to do something. If I said it, they did it. It is just that simple. I am now realizing that this value system is not instilled in other families as I believe it should. However, my family better stay on pointe. I didn’t tell Joseph what my plans were in regards to the children. I just kept going about my business in making the arrangements for my intentions.
However, now I am standing in the family room of Joe’s house with his wife Julianna. My initial thoughts were to strangle her neck. After all she made my grandchildren suffer through some shit that no child should ever have to go through. “I am doing my best to remain calm. I am not going to ask you again. Where the hell have you been?” And just like that the tears roll. They are flowing fast and full. Julianna comes to me and not for nothing she puts her arms around my neck. She is wailing and because I am also a mother, I embrace her. I rock her in my arms and I tell her that everything will work itself out. At this point, I really don’t know what to think about her. For all I know, Julianna being separated from the kids may have been forced on her by some thug. One thing is for sure, I plan on getting to bottom of all of this. Not to mention, I am still moving forward with my plans for the children.
“Goodmomma, I messed up! I messed up really bad!” Julianna continues sobbing and I am trying to understand what she is telling me while she is up here wailing. Half of the stuff she is telling me, I clearly can’t make out. What I do know is that this child smells like a sack full of pennies. She will definitely need a purging. I don’t believe that you can clean anything in a dirty sink or tub. But with the way that Julianna is smelling, I am willing to scrub the tub and throw her ass in there with some vinegar and hot water. This is not a job for Ivory soap. We are in heavy need for Dial. Let’s hope that they have that in this house to get this child somewhat back to par. I can’t stand a nasty woman. It hurts me to see her like this. She is so beautiful and was always so put together when I would see her and Joe. Now, it just looks like the streets have eaten her alive.
“Julianna, I am going to need you to take slow deep breaths and calm your nerves. I can’t help you if I don’t understand you. Lets go sit on the sofa so we can talk and sort things out.” Here’s the thing. I really do love and care for Julianna. She is the mother of my grandchildren and when Joe married her, I accepted her as one of my own. There has to be some logic as to what happened here. Lord help me. Once we are seated, Julianna starts to tell me all of the things that have happened up till now. I don’t know if I believe everything she says, but if what she says is true, the shit has truly hit the fan and I am glad that I have a plan in place for my grandchildren.
I was literally walking in the door from work when I heard the phone ringing. I rushed over to phone to see who it was. Typically, I don’t get many phone calls. If the phone is ringing it is normally for my wife who is gossiping with her snobbish friends. Today the ringing of the phone sounded different and I decided to go ahead and answer. “Lil Bill, this is your Daddy”. Hell I ain’t dumb. I know my daddy’s voice. The fact that I will be forty six in a few months doesn’t phase him to change my name from Lil Bill to just Bill. Either way, if daddy was calling, something was up. “I just spoke to your momma. She needs you, Alton, and Donald to fly up to Norfolk. She didn’t give me any specific details. But something is going on up there with Joseph and the kids. She wants yall to come up there as soon as you can. She said to fly there on a one-way and yall will be driving back.” This was really out of the blue. “Daddy is momma ok? Are the kids ok? What is going on? How soon should we get out of here?” Daddy goes through what little information he knows. “And Bill, I suggest you get on the next thing smoking to Norfolk with your brothers. Gone and make the arrangements to leave some time today. Let me know what you come up with and I will drive you to the airport if need be.” With that I am off the phone and headed upstairs to pack a few things. I have no idea what is really going on, but I do know that I better be on the next thing smoking.
The good thing is that Lil Bill works for Delta Airlines. My other son Donald works for TWA. If one can’t get all of them on the same flight out, then we have a backup plan to get them on a flight with the other airline. They all fly for free because they are employees or family to the employees. I am thanking God for these privileges right now. Sue Bone sounded like it was urgent. The fact that she hadn’t done much talking made me nervous enough to want to get on the plane with my boys and see what was happening for myself. I am sure that Sue can handle everything on her own. I didn’t marry no fool and she damn sure ain’t scared of nothing. I was actually enjoying the peace that had finally calmed my house since she left. Sue is one of the nicest persons that I know. The only thing is that she is a hell raiser and I am typically the one that is the reason for her raising hell. All together we have thirteen grandchildren. I can’t remember a time when there wasn’t a child in the house. I was usually the babysitter. I believe that is why she didn’t ask me to come up there as well.
I hang up from talking to Lil Bill and I dial the number to Donald’s house. Now out of my six children, I believe Donald is the most harassed. I don’t know what to expect when he comes around. Most people consider him a fool. He is far from stupid, but foolish he is. He answers the phone with the foolishness that only he can muster. “Hello, you are speaking with Donald Jones, Esquire! How can I be of service today?!” These lies he tells really pisses me off. He knows good and damn well he ain’t no lawyer. Hell, he barely got through a few weeks at Morris Brown. “Fool!!! This your daddy. Cut out all of that bullshit! Is this really how you answer your damn phone?! They gone lock your ass up just for telling lies!” Don goes on about all the new gossip he has going on with all of the folks down at the airport. He has what he calls a “Sissy Report”. For some reason he is fascinated with Sissies. If he wasn’t such a ladies man with six kids, I would have thought that he liked them damn Sissies. “Listen fool! I ain’t got time for all of your trash talking. Your momma done called for you and your brothers to fly to Norfolk today. I already spoke to Lil Bill and he is going to make the arrangements. Get your shit together and get with Lil Bill.” I knew from here, he was going to have a ton of questions. So I started in before he could get a word in. “Look, I don’t know the details of everything. I just know your momma is up there with Joe and the kids. She said she needs yall to come up there as soon as possible. I suggest you start getting it together. I know Lil Bill gone be calling soon. And before you forget, you still owe my ass some money from the other week. Don’t let another week go by and you ain’t ran me my change.” With asking for my money back, that got Don off the phone quick.
Aside from Don, none of our children really gave us any problems. When Sue Bone had Alton, she was convinced that this was her “Sweet Thang” A sweet child Alton was. He never asked a whole lot of questions. He just did as he was told and kept it moving. We could always depend on Alton. Al was the first of our children to graduate college. He met his wife while at Morris Brown. She was country as hell and for the life of me, I didn’t know what he saw in this woman. Her real name on her birth certificate was “Sugar”. Now who in the hell would name they child “Sugar”? It was beyond me. I thought she was crazy as hell and she always proved me right. She was another one of them gossiping wives that was always yapping at the mouth to her sisters. Sugar said these weren’t her sisters that her momma had, but they were her sisters from school. Now why in the hell did you need to talk to them all the damn time? It was as if they didn’t have anything else better to do. I called the house three times and each time I got the busy signal on the phone. I grabbed my hat and decided to drive over to Alton’s house so that I could get him straight on what Sue Bone needed him to do.
I am still sitting here with Julianna listening to what seems to be her side of the story. I just don’t know what to believe. If any part of this explanation is true, then we have a lot of work to do. I never believed in giving up on anything that was worth having. I could see that this child was troubled and could be in trouble herself. What was not going to happen was that she was not going to take her troubles and my kids with her. She was a damn fool if she thought that much. Julianna pauses for a moment. “Goodmomma, I am not good enough for my kids. I am not good enough for Joseph. I need you to tell them that for me.” Ah hell nah! “Julianna you are going to need to pray about this. Why don’t you clean yourself up and go to Joe and kids down at the hospital. You and Joe can talk this out.” She gives me a faint smile and places her wedding ring on the coffee table. With tears running down her face, she gives the room a once over which I am sure was devastating to say the least. From there she was out the front door. Where she planned on going or whether or not she planned on coming back, I didn’t know. Poor Joseph.