Pamela Lowe Saldana resides in the current it city of Nashville where she is the long term CAO of a thriving multimedia entertainment group, though her roots are in the oilfield plains of West Texas; there she draws inspiration and setting.
An avid music lover and professional DJ, Pam's R&B and classic rock record collection at last count numbered over a thousand albums. Her book collection--well worn and loved, mostly thrillers and biographies--is not quite as large.
Pam is blessed with a not so tall, but definitely dark and handsome husband and two beautiful adult daughters. She enjoys hiking, biking and tennis; and, yes, she loves football and barbecue--the Tennessee Titans and Memphis style respectively.
My beloved mother, Connie Lowe, died January 8, 2017 after a harrowing fifteen year battle with cancer. She was a graceful warrior. She wore the armor of God. I was there, with her, when she died. "There" is Odessa Texas.
Odessa is not my home, but it is my hometown. There I learned to swim, graduated from high school and dabbled in college. I met my husband there too.
As the old story goes, I had big dreams--theoretically possible, I suppose, kind of like winning the lottery--and all of them began with getting the hell out of there. That I could do, and so we did--my husband and I.
Leaving my mother and her family was hard, to put it mildly, which I expected, but leaving Odessa? That barren expanse of mesquite and dirt? No. That would be easy.
But as I watched the pump jacks, the oilfield supply yards and corrugated steel sheds grow distant from the passenger seat of my 77 Cutlass, there was a nagging ache in my chest and, even more bothersome, an urgency of tears that caught me off guard. This was different. And though it was conjoined to leaving my mom, it too was an entity of loss.
So much has changed since that April morning when we left, pulling a makeshift trailer with a camper on top, the remnants of our belongings packed tightly, neatly; my husband is a fastidious man. Most things have changed for the better and I know now, as I knew then, that leaving was a good thing. The revelation is in what has remained the same. Those pump jacks, that hard graveled land; the tumbleweeds and clapboard houses; yes, those breathtaking sunrises are in the strands of my DNA, interwoven with my mother's teachings. Her faith. The example that she set of truth, courage and beauty. Her love.
And so when my mother left me, I was there, comforted by them, by all of those things, and I remembered what she told me when I would complain about Odessa, about who I am and where I came from. She said, "They're good people." About that, and so many other things, my mom was right.