Texas Side of Things
October 13, 2023
I know there comes a time in life when we all have to say goodbye, but it is never easy. Last Saturday, my familyhad to say goodbye to the matriarch of the Banner family. My mother, Drucilla Faye Banner, was very special to me because she was my inspiration and up to the day she passed, she still called me her little boy. She had the prettiest,authentic smile and a huge warm heart and if you look at the picture in her obituary, you will see what I mean.
I have thanked God many times for giving me someone so special to be my mother — someone that guided,disciplined, comforted, and especially celebrated with me when I did well. She was the judge when we kids had arguments…more like knock down fights would be a more accurate term…and she was our biggest supporter in school, sports, livestock shows, and many other activities. She was the wife and partner to our father. She was strong and determined when she needed to be and more kind and giving than anyone I’ve ever known. Mom was an excellent cook, seamstress and was very involved with my sisters in 4-H teaching them how to sew and cook. Theyboth won numerous awards for their baking and sewing projects.
When I think of my mother, I like to listen to Dolly Parton because she writes and sings songs that remind me of my mother. Everyone remembers the song, “Coat of Many Colors” which is possibly the most heartfelt song she ever wrote. There are two particular verses in the song that really remind me of my mom. “Momma sewed the rags together, sewin’ every piece with love, she made my coat of many colors, that I was so proud of.” And then the last verse of the song when she sings, “But I was rich as I could be in my coat of many colors, my momma made for me, just for me.” No, I never had a coat of many colors, but I did wear a lot of pants that had knee patches on them fromsliding on the dirt ground during recess in elementary school and I know my mother repaired my britches with thesame love that Dolly’s mother did.
I have taken care of my mother for almost 25 years now and I will be at a loss for a while. She convinced menot to sell out our cattle herd in the drought of 2011 and she would remind me of stories that my grandfather and father had told her about their own experiences ranching. She would call me on Saturday afternoons and someweekdays, and she would say, “Where is Jim Banner today?” because she knew I traveled a lot. Mother taught me well, but she also let me get away with some things because she knew I would learn a valuable lesson from the potential mistake. She taught me to be honest, tell the truth, not to steal, treat others as you would like them to treatyou and to love the Lord.
Of course, I am going to miss my mother, but she and my dad taught me well and although they are no longer with me, their memories will always be in my heart and in my mind.