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  • Writer's pictureHenery X (long)

Grandma's Baby Girl

A short story

Photo by Jeff Siepman on Unsplash

The only way to break generational curses is by creating generational blessings. — Henery X

Grandma’s Baby Girl

2022, Henery X ©

Seventeen-year-old Paige Johnson was a master chef, but she didn’t always love to cook. In fact, the only thing she once liked about food was eating it. But she always loved her grandmother, who was a master chef herself. So, when her grandmother offered to enlighten her about how to cook, she agreed purely out of love for her soon to be instructor.

Eighty-year-old Dorothy Hilton-Anderson has been cooking ever since she was twelve-years-old, which wasn’t by choice, but due to circumstance. She had been the oldest of four children, and her siblings looked at her as their second mother. Both their parents worked two jobs apiece to make ends meet, so this left young Dorothy with much to do.

One of the jobs her mother had was that of a cook, in an upscale restaurant. Like with Dorothy, Alice Washington-Hilton had been made to cook at an early age. She was enlightened on all she knew thanks to her mother, and could enlighten her eldest daughter because of it.

When Dorothy was twenty, she enrolled into a prestigious Culinary Arts Program. Though the tuition was steep, residents from her neighborhood covered the total cost. They all wanted to see the young woman they loved succeed. It was truly a community of love.

Dorothy would graduate from the program, land a job at a swanky restaurant, and eventually start her own restaurant with portions of her savings. She would name her restaurant Debbie’s Place, which was in honor of her only child. She had plans to pass the restaurant over to her daughter, but she had plans of her own, and they didn’t include running a restaurant.

Fall, 2017

“Baby Girl, how are things going in there?” Dorothy said. The seventy-four-year-old woman was lounging in her favorite recliner, in the living room of her two-story home.

“I’m almost done, Gram,” twelve-year-old Paige said.

“You ain’t burning nothing up in there, are you?”

“You don’t hear any alarms, do you?” Paige said, she giggled.

Dorothy chuckled, “Alright now young lady. Don’t go getting besides yourself,” she said humorously.

Paige came out of the kitchen, carrying a large plate filled with delicious looking food, which she prepared herself.

“Here you go, Gram. I pray you like it.”

“Looks and smells good, Baby Girl.” Dorothy began eating the meal prepared by her granddaughter, and especially for her.

“Well?” Paige said.

Dorothy just kept eating.


“Child. When you see somebody still eating after the first taste of everything, you have your answer. But if it makes you happy, I love everything.” Dorothy resumed eating.

Paige smiled as she watched her grandmother eat a meal she prepared from scratch, and thanks to enlightenment from the woman, she now had the pleasure of feeding.

Paige and Dorothy now lounged on a cushy sectional sofa.

“Baby Girl, I’m going to leave Debbie’s Place in your care when you turn eighteen, or if I don’t make it that long,” Dorothy said matter-of-factly.

“Oh, you’ll still be around, Gram.”

“Only God knows for sure, Baby Girl. Anyway, it’s all set up. I had a will created and you’re to get the restaurant, as well as this home we’re now in. I wanted it to be passed over to you by your mother, but she had no interest in cooking. So, I had to skip a generation.”

“I’m honored, Gram. I won’t let you down.”

“I know you won’t, Baby Girl. See, I know you now love what you do because of the joy it brings you, and not because of the joy you knew it brought me. I tasted the love with every bite of my meal. That’s what lets me know Debbie’s Place will be in excellent hands.”

Fall, 2022

It was a beautiful Summer Saturday afternoon when Dorothy Hilton-Anderson took her final breath. But it wasn’t a sad day. No, she had made everyone close to her promise that when this day came, they would celebrate her life. So, that's what they did. They rented a hall to accommodate the many people who came to pay homage to an exceptional woman.

Paige handled the food that was served, which was all of her grandmother’s favorite dishes. This would be her second fondest memory of her grandmother. The first would always be the time she became her inexperienced, eager little master chef in the making.

The end.

What are you willing to sacrifice to live your dreams? If it’s not everything that has nothing to do with the journey, then your dreams will more than likely remain just that… dreams.

This is the fourth of ten short stories I’m writing and that will make up a book meant to inspire the inner child in us all. The main characters will all be under the age of eighteen, showing that there’s no age requirement when it comes to living dreams. I want the stories of these youngsters to encourage the elders who happen to read them because again, there’s no age requirement when it comes to living dreams.

Thank you for taking the time to acknowledge my offering.

Remember. I’m not here to convince you to believe. I’m here to offer you something else to consider.

May we never lose our desire to outdo what we’ve already done.

Peace, Love, and the utmost Respect.

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