This month I’d like to introduce my amazingly fabulous grandmother, Janet Branch.
Janet is one of the most beautiful, kind, caring, and loving individuals you will ever meet. She’s not just an amazing grandmother, she is an inspirational one too. Her heart is so big and the love she has for her family is like no other. Though she has some trouble getting around sometimes, she has no trouble being there for anyone who needs her.
When Janet was growing up, there weren’t a lot of career options for women. They were either a teacher, nurse, or a secretary. Janet chose to be a secretary and she graduated from Mars Hill University with it. Then she worked as an office manager for the Chamber of Commerce for several years.
Some of her favorite childhood memories were Thanksgiving at her grandparent’s house who lived on a farm. She can recall playing in the corn field and going into the chicken house to gather eggs. She also loved playing with the neighborhood kids who would play for hours and hours in the summer until supper time.
In her spare time, Janet likes to play cards, read, and mostly watch movies. She tells me that her favorite movies include Shaw Shank Redemption, The African Queen, and any musicals. Janet also loves to draw and paint with oil pastels. She used to paint all the time, but now Parkinson’s disease has gotten in the way.
Janet also used to travel all over the world. She has been to China and walked on the Great Wall, seen the Ming Tombs and the pandas of the Beijing Zoo. She’s been to Israel and toured Jerusalem, the Garden of Gethsemane, the Dead Sea, and took a boat across the sea of Galilee. She’s also been on a cruise to the Bahamas, she’s been to Scotland and England, Chicago and Los Angeles. Then there’s New York City, of which she’s traveled to 10 times and seen two Broadway shows each time she went. That’s a lot of shows!
I’ve fallen in some wonderful places.”
She says one of her biggest regrets is that she didn’t travel more. And that’s saying something! She’s traveled more than most.
Janet tells me the things she loves most about herself are her hazel eyes, sense of humor, and her style. What she doesn’t like is her weight and stubbornness. What I love about my grandmother is her selflessness and willingness to help others. Though she says she has never been happy with her weight, she has never let that bring her down. She loves herself no matter what and continues to be an inspiration for her children and many grandchildren.
Her definition of beauty:
Beauty is not necessarily outward appearance. I’ve always believed that beauty lies within. Beauty is kindness, a sense of humor, and someone who shows concern for others.”
I believe my grandmother is redefining what it means to be beautiful because of the strength she shows everyday. Janet Branch is the strongest person I know. It would be very easy for her to be discouraged by her condition, and I’m sure there are times where she does feel such, but she does not let it get to her. She persists and even more, she is blissfully happy in life.
My life motto has always been, it is what it is, because you learn to deal with what life throws at you. It’s up to you to be happy. Life is what you make it.
I love my grandmommy.