Mary's Journey

Who Will ü influence today?

“It takes a village to raise a child” is an African proverb which means that it takes an entire community of different people interacting with children for them to grow.

I was blessed growing up to be surrounded by adults and teachers that guided and helped me find a safe passage through this life. My adult children both were influenced by a teacher who made them explore and discover ways to learn……Mavis Bentley. I wanted them to take her classes each year of high school as she taught and cared for them as if they were her own children. And now, my girls can confidently name several adults they trust and would seek out if they couldn’t talk to me.

Growing up in the 70’s, we did not have texting, Snapchat, Facebook, or the internet. We did however have this network of adults, that with a simple phone call would disclose all the good or bad you had just gotten into……my parents usually knew what happened, my involvement, and the details of an event before I would arrive home. This was great when you had won an award, not so great if you were doing “donuts” with your car in town.

My parents were heavy sleepers so sneaking in past curfew was pretty easy unless I had hung out with Sue, Linda, Janell, or Mary Jo…… of their mothers would make the call, ensuring each of us were home safe and suffering the same consequences! At the time, I didn’t appreciate it, however when I became a mother, I welcomed those phone calls. I wanted my children to have other adults in their life that served as a “second parent”.

When I was diagnosed with cancer, a card on a monthly basis would arrive at my door. The card was uplifting and spiritual. It was always signed…….Mom T. This lady was one of those adults who watched over me as I maneuvered through high school. She was that mom who praised me when I had done well and “gave me the look” if I was goofing off. She now was back in my life. Her faith brought me strength and her love comforted me. I realized that it didn’t matter how old I was, having Mom T on my prayer team was a great thing.

She follows my cancer journey and now my Trüronia blog to the point where our relationship has shifted. We now both influence each other. She has become a TrüBeliever in Trüronia. I am thrilled that this “second mom” is having such great results, that I had to share her story with you…………but before I do, I have a challenge. This next week, please seek out that person who cared for you like a “second parent” and thank them. For some of you this will be easy, others may find it hard, but what I know is that we do not travel through life alone and if you have the opportunity to remind a person how important they were to you……it is a good thing!


Meet Mary. I like to call her Mom T. Mary graduated from Albion High School and then farmed with her husband, Ray, west of Saint Edward. Together they raised five children. Mary helped her husband farm for 30 years and like most farm wives, she also worked outside of the home. She was a CNA at the local nursing home. Mary and Ray eventually moved to Columbus, where she then worked at the hospital.

Mary was an active woman who placed her life in God’s hands. In September 1979, tragedy entered into her world. Her oldest child, Tony was home from college a week before he was to be the best man at his friend’s wedding. Mary was in charge of the wedding cake. Tony along with several of his friends attended a bachelor party. On his way back to the farm, Tony had a car accident. He lost his life. Mary buried her son three days later. She then finished that wedding cake. She will tell you that “Faith is the only thing that can get you through such a tragic event” and that losing a child will always be the worse thing she has had to endure. Tony’s girlfriend, Marge still keeps in touch with Mary and has visited her yearly from Minnesota. “I lost my son, but I gained a beautiful daughter”.

Mary and her husband moved to New Mexico due to Ray’s arthritis and remained there for 16 years. Ray died in 2008 and Mary had planned on remaining there until she died, however she worried about the well being of her oldest daughter, who needed assistance, so she decided to move back to Nebraska three years ago, so her daughter could be close to her siblings.

Nebraska weather is not kind to people who suffer with arthritis, but Mary felt she would just “deal with her pain”. Since both of her parents suffered from arthritis, Mary tried hard to take care of herself physically as she knew this disease would eventually be a part of her life. She was an avid vitamin user for over 40 years.

As arthritis began to take over her body, Mary readily collected canes to assist her balance. But then something happened……..she discovered Trüronia. As I interviewed her, the canes remained in her holder by the door as she proudly announced they are only used when she is outside. Mary has found a solid friend with Trüronia and she is now a TrüBeliever.

Mary lives alone in Columbus, Nebraska in a cute, quaint home. She danced around the house when I was there to interview her and as you can see through the video……she is a sharp, articulate, active and happy 79 year old mom, grandmother, and great grandmother who continues to influence me with her words and faith!

Until next week……remember …… reach out to your “second parent” and let them know just how their influence helped you reach your goals. And with each TrüBeliever story, I hope you see the impact it may have on you or someone you love.

Check out more about Trüronia and keep me posted!


The Writer

Gina Baker has been battling Stage 3 ovarian cancer since 2014. She is a farm wife, mother, grandmother, and a mental health therapist. She is a blogger for Trüronia and can be reached at

Real Farmers Making Real juice.

We use real, fresh aronia juice to make sure Truronia is packed with the best anti-aging and anti-inflammatory power. Transition to a beverage that will not only taste good, but will make you feel good as well.