Her boys tell G she doesn’t have to work so hard. She can relax now. Take it easy. Travel. Visit them.
But when you’ve worked hard and maintained a tight ship, when you’ve helped run a business and kept your family straight, educated your kids and other people’s kids, started a new career in financial advising, well, some people just aren’t built to take it easy. So G and her husband haven’t slowed down.
“When you do something one way for so long, and you’re used to working hard, it’s hard to stop all of a sudden,” said one of G’s boys.
G was born out in Sayre. They grow hard workers out in Western Oklahoma. She had only one brother, so when her boys came along years later, G wasn’t sure about all the rough-housing and horseplay. “I don’t think she understood two brothers were going to butt heads,” said one of the boys. “Times where we didn’t get along without ending in a fight. As time went on, she realized, that was part of having boys.”
G wasn’t much into sports. She danced some and modeled some. Received an education degree and then a master’s. While teaching, G became a cheerleader sponsor. She eventually drew the eye of young coach involved with football and basketball, so she started learning a little. They eventually married — he’s the one who calls her G — and started a family.
At ballgames, G was pretty quiet in the crowd, though as she learned more about sports, she’s started to speak up a little more, as often as not she’s talking to herself when telling the ballplayers what to do and the referees what to call. Sports were fun and sports were important, but priorities were well-established.
“She’s pretty incredible,” said one of the boys. “She’s definitely paved the way for us to do our thing. We consider our parents blessings. Paved the way for our work ethic. A living example of how to work hard. Growing up, living off a single teacher’s salary, she was very frugal with our money and taking care of us, making sure everything was budgeted correctly.”
G quit teaching to raise the boys. She homeschooled the boys most of their youth and helped run the family’s trophy business out of their garage.
“Looking back on it, I wouldn’t have traded it for anything,” said one of the boys. “Just the foundation that she set us up with. We didn’t lack anything, from going through that experience. She was just a constant example of how to be disciplined. Whether at work, or in school, or in sports. I see the real value. Because of that, she and my dad were able to instill strong morals into us first hand, each and every day.”
Money’s not really tight these days.
G and her husband live in a new house, and she’s got a new car. But she’s still working virtually every day. Still very practical. Still very organized. Still very logical. Still running a clean, orderly house, though much of the time she’s half a continent away from her boys.
And so on this fine Sunday morning, a tip of the cap to Tommy’s wife and Taylor’s and Blake’s mom. Happy Mother’s Day to Gail Griffin.
Berry Tramel: Berry can be reached at (405) 760-8080 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. He can be heard Monday through Friday from 4:40-5:20 p.m. on The Sports Animal radio network, including FM-98.1. You can also view his personality page at newsok.com/berrytramel.