Sep 20, 2007 | Uncategorized

This is unfinished, but I wanted to get it out and off the half-written word document that it’s been living in since July. Something about it gathering word processing dust really irked me, regardless of if it’s finished or not.

And so…

It was an essay with a theme of Goddesses, mentors, girlfriends, and all-around important female role models.

And, despite my inner writhing, I didn’t edit it in any way.


I have no sisters. I have no female cousins. I was spoiled a lot growing up because I was the only daughter, the only granddaughter, and I took after my Mother and Grandmothers in my love for shoes, strings of beads, and lipstick. I didn’t begin to really appreciate the women in my life until after my first year of college. I was a fairly good kid in high school, made the grades to get into a college, didn’t get caught doing drugs, didn’t total a car, didn’t really get in trouble. I don’t know if I’d say I was mediocre, because my Mom would argue otherwise, but, I didn’t begin to feel passionate about things until college. And during college was when I met the most influential ladies of my life.

My first class with Dr. Yow was the first upper level introductory English class. She taught us Shakespeare, poetry and plays. I enrolled in her class because I worked in the English office and she seemed really nice. Really nice she was, really easy she was not. At first I couldn’t understand why the papers I thought were genius she gave back to me with C grades. It was actually C work, and she wanted to show me that. I liked her so much that I ended up taking her that following summer for Southern Literature. This class is where I truly blossomed. She loved teaching the material as much as I loved learning the material, and that class earned me an easy A. After this class, I signed up for American Literature yet again the following semester. I was a chronic re-registered of Dr. Yow. I recommended her to everyone, except the lazy students I knew. I fell even more in love with literature after her third class, and it showed. My papers were almost always handed back to me with A’s written on top, and she was proud of me. I waited another year to take her again, this last time for a team taught Georgia History and Writers course. I thrived. I fell in love with Eudora Welty and Flannery O’Connor and the connection I had with her grew. She wrote my recommendation letter after I graduated and went on my job search. She wrote a personal recommendation for my graduate school admission, coaching me along the way. I feel like I could never thank her enough, except to tell everyone how proud I am that she whipped me into literary shape.

Dr. B. My Pandora. She has opened a world up to me I’d have never gotten to alone. CB has been my guiding light, my everlasting force; everything I ever needed to help me focus on my goal. As a college junior, I started working for her part time every week, editing a new novel manuscript for content and grammatical errors, compiling and mailing off work to writing contests and grants, writing letters to editors, filing important documents, making appointments, and proofreading letters. I never thought that a part-time job would inspire me in such a way that would convince me to go on to bigger and better things. For that, Dr. CB, I don’t know how to thank you. May you continue to inspire future writers of America with your brazen girlieness and your thirst for knowledge.

My Mother. Ma mere. My blood. I think the past four years have strengthened my relationship with my mother more than I thought possible. She is now my best friend as opposed to just my mother, and I appreciate all she has done. I am growing older and slowly becoming her, which I find more and more is a good thing, not something that makes me shudder and say, ”Ew, I’m my mother.” She has livened up and is really living her life now that she doesn’t have to take care of me.


Sigh. And that’s all I got.


  1. it’s awesome to hear such good things about these ladies because i remember you talking about them all the time. i remember you getting C’s on your papers and still taking her for other classes and growing and learning with her. you’re the shit ashley, for real.

  2. You make mothering easy and fun. I want to teach you to listen to your inner voice. Sometimes it can be so quiet and yet it is so important. It can be hard to recognize at first (kindof like a baby’s first kick inside of you) but once you hear it, and really isten to it, you will know. ILY, m