Monday, January 12, 2009

Words from a Mother's Heart

I recall the day I became a national bestselling author. It was September 2005, and the book that marked that monumental moment for me was Crossing Jhordan's River (Moody Publishers/Lift Every Voice imprint), my third novel. Since that time, God has truly shown me much favor. Between then and now, six more of my titles have graced the Essence magazine's Best Selling Books list, making me a 7-time national bestseller. It's an humbling honor that I don't take for granted.

The first time I made "the list," I can remember thinking that it would be incredibly difficult for any happening in my literary life to measure up to that moment. I've been immeasureably grateful and elated every time I've made the list, but there has always been something about that first time that made it more special and more memorable than all the others. That moment - the moment Crossing Jhordan's River made the list - had never been rivaled...until now.

Today, my heart is overwhelmed. Thanks to the sales of her novel, Testing Relationships (Urban Books/Urban Christian imprint), my daughter, Brittney Holmes, made the list (see Essence magazine's February 2009 issue). And I found myself overjoyed beyond belief. Far more so than I was when I saw my name etched among the elite four years ago. Today I laughed louder, cried harder, and celebrated longer than I ever did for myself. My baby made the list! It was a prayer answered, and I took joy in calling her in her dorm on the campus of University of Georgia to inform her of the honor. While she released gleeful screams, I cried some more. The same glee motivated my tears.

It sounds so cliche' at times when we hear it said that parents want their children to be even more blessed than they, or to obtain greater achievements than they did. But what I felt today brought so much validation to that age-old adage. I was 38 when I became a national bestselling author. Brittney is 19. It was my third book. It's her second. She's on track to achieve above and beyond what her mother achieves, and I don't think I could be happier or prouder if I'd tried.

Congratulations, sweetie!

From a mother's heart......


Dwan Abrams said...

That was really touching, Kendra. Brittney deserves every accolade she receives. Many blessings to both you and Brittney. Congratulations!

Brittney Holmes said...

Thank you, Mommy, for being so proud of me. I still can't believe that I'm a National Bestseller, but I know it was all God's doing! I think I've said this a few times already, but I APPRECIATE YOU for always being in my corner and encouraging me to continue on this destined career path. I love you!!

Stacy Hawkins Adams said...


Your post left me teary-eyed, too. I am thrilled for Brittany and you. From one mother to another, I celebrate with you! Congrats, Brittany! God is going to bless you beyond your wildest dreams. I'll be watching and cheering you on.

Amazed By His Grace,

Sherry said...

That is truly awesome, to God be the glory! I celebrate with you as all Mothers should do as if Brittany was mine but God gave her to you. I cry as you cry and laugh as you laugh because thats what real sisters do. Congrats to you Ms. Brittany as you continue to enter into the calling that God has placed on your life to be a blessing for His Kingdom and your family too.

Love Always,
Sherry Harris-Shaw
The Master's Mime

Patricia Neely-Dorsey said...

I am so happy for you and your daughter. As a mother,
I know exactly how you feel! Someone once said that having a child is like having your heart walk around out side of your body. I didn't understand that before I had my first (and only) child,but I certainly do now. With your child the emotions and feelings are magnified 100-fold over and above any feelings/emotions you have ever felt for yourself or anyone on the planet. The highs are higher and the lows are lower. You experience a depth of love that you never thought possible. Yes, as women, we love parents,husbands extended family, and even friends. But, there is absolutely no earthly relationship that parallels with the love with have for a child.
Go ahead girlfriend and cry, cry, cry, scream, shout and do that "happy dance". We understand!!!

Ty said...

What a wonderful mother and daughter story! You are both an inspiration. A big congratulations to both of you!

Anonymous said...

Kendra, I received my February edition of Essence magazine with the amazing Tyler Perry gracing the cover sometime early last week and though I was eager to read his story, I hadn't yet opened it up, until now. Going straight to page 72, I see what you saw and my heart is so happy for you. Yes, every parent wants their children to go above and beyond anything that we've ever done or thought and congrats to you and Brittney and to God be all the glory, for through Him, she has done just that. Laura

Tiffany Warren said...

Congratulations Brittney!!! And congrats Kendra! That is awesome.

Marc Lacy said...

This is great news Kendra. I'm sure the level of pride and happiness within you is completely immeasurable. Awesome! Brittany, I've been a fan of yours from day 1...and you have never disappointed. Now, my eagerness and yearn to see what the future holds for you has only increased. Kendra, this is a blessed case of "chip off the 'young' block!" LOL. Congratulations to you both! Keep inspiring us all.

Peace and blessings,


Donna said...

Kendra, what a joy for you that your daughter has truly followed in your footsteps. Congratulations and continued blessings to you all.

Kenny Blue said...


I still remember BEA 2005 like it was yesterday. You have such a wonderful and humble spirit, and anyone who spends five minutes with you can tell that GOD truly guides your ship. You deserve to be this proud, because you have raised your children like parents should. Bask in this moment, because you and Brittney are special human beings.

Pam Perry, PR Coach said...

Wow. That was soooooooo good. You are so anointed with that pen (keyboard)...words!