Home Economics Dept, USM
My mother had numerous baby books for me, some she sent me years ago and then others she had hidden from me because they had my birth last name in them. I’ve been scanning in old photos, some I’ve never seen, from a baby book I had never seen until after my mother passed away a few years ago and it was sent to me.
I found this photo of a young woman named Beatriz Zuniga holding me as I chewed on my mother’s twirling baton. On the back of the photo was Beatriz’s name, and a note that she was from Guatemala. I later found a note in my baby book that Beatriz was my “Honorary Godmother”. I was raised as a Southern Baptist, so in those days there were not really any Godparents for our religion. I had several I knew of when I was growing up, but, none were ever involved in my life when I was growing up, so I was surprised to find this photo. The photo was taken at the University of Southern Mississippi, where I stayed in the Home Ec Dept. while my mother attended school there.
My mother called the young students who cared for me overnite on campus in the Home Ec buildings my “Southern Mommas”. My mother stayed in a dorm with her sorority sisters on campus. These students were responsible for my care as part of the curriculum there at USM. I am amazed with this photo — I’ve had a lifelong love affair with the Spanish language and cultures that speak the language. I only know a little bit of Spanish. I am wondering if my Southern Momma Beatriz had an influence in my infancy that fostered my love of diversity.
There are many other reasons I love the Spanish/Mexican/South American culture and language, but, I have to say I was very intrigued to learn of Beatriz yesterday. I spent some time on Ancestry looking for Beatriz Zuniga. There were several. I thought I’d share this photo with you because it is so sweet. I’d love to find her. But, if I can’t find her, I know she is special to me. I will share this little story on my blog, The Tenderly Rose Collection. Wouldn’t it be neat if somehow I could reconnect with her?