DALLAS — For Khiandra Marsland, whether times are favorable or unfavorable, her mother will make it a point to be there.
“Throughout my life, whenever I needed her she was there,” Marsland said. “The distance from Texas to Louisiana was not an issue. If I called her for anything, she would jump in her van and head on over.”
Fortunately for Marsland, a mother of two (Kendrick and Khiandra), such a life-altering trend had gone on for a little more than 13 years, particularly since this thriving, longtime educator relocated from her native hometown of Alexandria, Louisiana to Dallas last May.
Today, however, it seems the close knit bond between Marsland and her mother, Verandia Roland Marsland, has become tighter than it has ever been, in large part because this big-hearted woman who gave her life deemed it necessary to never become inseparable from each of her five grandchildren.
“My mother is also affectionately known as Mimi by her grandchildren,” Khiandra explained. “She has often said that she could train others on how to be a grandmother. It’s a role that she does not take lightly. She showers all five of her grandkids with love and care packages filled with their favorite treats. I can truly say my mom gives love to not only her family and friends, but her community as well.”
In commemorating MemphiSport’s Salute To Mother’s Day 2015, Khiandra said among the attributes she labels most intriguing about her mother is how she routinely goes to great lengths to inspire and impact the lives of people from various walks of life.
In a nutshell, “Mimi,” a devoted godly woman who instilled in her children Biblical principles she advised them to apply to their respective lifestyles, is widely viewed as a compassionate individual whose reputation is such that she boasts a heart for people.
“My mother stands out from others because she has a heart of gold,” Khiandra said. “She is truly one of the most giving people I know. She never meets a stranger and has a godly affection for the elderly. She will see an elderly person in the store and will go up to them and strike up a conversation. Before long, she has them laughing and talking and treating them like they are family.”
That Verandia steadfastly demonstrates love for her family and others has served as a monumental example, of sorts, for Khiandra, who teaches for the Grand Prairie Independent School District. That’s because not only does Khiandra displays compassion and love for her students but, most importantly, she instills those very similar qualities in the lives of her children.
Fortunately for her, her mother routinely travels to and from Dallas to help spread such love to Kendrick and Khiandra, an unlikely development she welcomed wholeheartedly in the aftermath of her move from Louisiana.
“I am humble and in awe of her love and support of me and my kids,” said Khiandra, assessing her mother’s overall impact on her and her children. “I was feeling overwhelmed and a loss for direction and it was her support and through God’s guidance that I landed on my feet.”
Which, to the delight of Khiandra, sums up why this latest Mother’s Day will hold an even greater meaning.
It is, after all, because of her mother’s unyielding love and guidance, that life in Texas nowadays has given way to a renewed sense of solace and comfort and direction, something about which has benefited Khiandra and her children mightily in recent months.
So much for the past hardships and seemingly insurmountable hurdles she had to clear.
That’s because “Mimi” has made it a point to be there from the outset.
“She is a godly example of how we are to walk and be children of integrity,” Khiandra said. “Now that I am a mother, it is my goal to help my children achieve their greatest dreams and to be their biggest cheerleader along the way.”
Whether times for them are favorable or unfavorable.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Whether your mother is living or deceased, if you would like to pay homage to your mom, grandmother, wife, girlfriend, etc., with a unique Mother’s Day tribute that will feature an in-depth story like this one, call Reporter Andre Johnson at 901-690-6587 or Facebook message him under “Andre T. Johnson” for details.
Andre Johnson is a senior writer for MemphiSport. Based in Dallas, Texas, Johnson also covers the NBA Southwest Division. To reach Johnson, send email to email@example.com. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist.