“I grew up in Foley on a farm. My dad raised soybeans and corn. I worked on the farm and drove tractors and combines. I rode bulls because my brothers told me I couldn’t. I showed them I could. I have cleaned houses for ten years. I was a waitress for 35 years. I would give anything to go back to waiting tables. I quit because I got tangled up in drugs, that is easy to do in the restaurant business and went down that dark road. My mama was sick. I am the baby of six kids, and mama didn’t want me when I was a baby. She gave my brothers and sisters the love I wanted, but I still loved her and took care of her. There was a lot of pain I covered up with drugs. I went to prison because I was accused of something I didn’t do. I couldn’t prove my innocence and was guilty until proven innocent. The Lord knows I didn’t do it. They offered me a deal with a fine, but I wouldn’t pay the fine. The sent me Tutwiler for 45 days. It was terrifying. I slept with murderers. The things I saw and heard. I came out, quit messing around with drugs and cleaned up my life.
Two years ago, I was in the hospital with pneumonia. I was upstairs and my mama was downstairs in the hospital when she passed away. I kept getting sick. I went to the hospital and told them I don’t have time to be sick because I am starting a new cleaning job. Two weeks later, they went in and scraped my lungs. I still smoke cigarettes. It is hard to quit. I don’t have health insurance because it cost an arm and a leg. We had it and were doing okay until Obamacare raised it from $300 to $700. We couldn’t afford that.
I started cleaning condos at the beach and big houses in Fairhope. My husband was a shrimper all of his life. In 2014, our house went underwater. we lost everything. Pictures, books, Christmas decorations. Those are more than just things and it broke my heart. I keep going. I have to stay in motion. I always thank the Lord for the houses to clean.
My clients go to Costa Rico, Puerto Rico, and Italy. It would be nice to go on vacation, but that’s not what the Lord wants me to have. My daddy taught me there were two ways to get things, get out and work your ass off for it and buy it, or borrow to buy it. Borrowing means you didn’t work your ass off for it. I hear my daddy say, ‘Keep working girl.’ My husband are saving to make a trip to the Mississippi casino one day. Each one of us would spend $100 and come home.
I am proud of my honesty. Three or four years ago, I was coming home on 32. We needed money badly. I saw a purse on the side of the road. I took it to the Dollar General and they put it in the safe. There was about $3,000 and social security cards inside. It belonged to a Hispanic lady and they made sure it got back to her. If I had brought that home, karma would have gotten me. Karma is bitch, but we are friends.
I want a Dodge truck, 10 acres and a house on it so I can leave it to my kids. If the Lord wants it, it will happen. I also want a buffet restaurant. Anything left over at the end of the night, I would feed the homeless. I would love to be out front mingling with customers. It is fun to dream about that, but right now, the good Lord wants me here. If He wanted me to have anything more, He would give it to me.”