A Look Back depicts with rich and lively details of growing up in rural Alabama. We survived off the land and homemade medicine. We lived in the woods and labored in the cotton fields. Running water and electricity weren’t available until I was near adolescence – and the same goes for indoor plumbing. Yet any scarcity only served to strengthen my family’s strong heritage, which is far greater than mere material possessions.
Without self-pity, these stories celebrate the human spirit and the triumphant power to rise above any circumstances. What a privilege it is to share these true-life anecdotes of struggle and survival in the Deep South.
Documenting the death of my family members has allowed me to free my mind and heal in a way I never expected. It transformed my life. Follow along as seven lives unfold—each unique, each complex. This snapshot into the struggles of growing up dirt poor in Alabama and the subsequent migrations to Detroit and New York gives readers a glimpse into the deep south and our traditions. As for burying lost loved ones, our traditions may be completely new to you: viewings, wakes, and Home Going services. Funerals are celebrations in the hearts and minds of Christian African Americans. Most importantly, conquering sorrow and leaning on faith are themes woven throughout the book. It truly is a must-read, for my mission is to encourage others as they walk through the darkest hours. Hope and healing are on the horizon.