Ode to my wife

Published 11:59 am Thursday, September 13, 2018

Generally, I try to avoid mixing policy with my private life, but this week I will vary from that. My wife, Jessie, will be celebrating a birthday in a few days. Therefore, I believe it only fair that I publicly thank her for her years of enduring me and my schedule as a legislator.

When I first served on the Mecklenburg Board of Supervisors, she learned quickly how to deal with other teachers that did not like some of my positions on issues. She explained that she and I are different people, that they should contact me directly and give me their thoughts. She may or may not agree with me but she did not want to miscommunicate their message. They may not have been happy, but few bothered her after that.

During my time in Richmond, there was little of that, however, the challenges for her were always there. When I first went to Richmond, our four children were from age two months – 10-years-old. Four children need two parents, but she handled it well. Often, I was at work, at meetings in Richmond or in the district, or campaigning. Jessie has been a true trooper, much of that time teaching school while raising four young people that are now productive citizens on their own in which we are both proud. Their success has been entirely due to themselves and the parenting skills of their mother.

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Likewise, it makes me proud when one of her former students shows true happiness when they happen upon Jessie. It used to be big hugs by little ones, now it is more often big smiles. She chose to retire several years ago but continues to maintain a busy life between church, the Food Pantry, and many other projects for the community and for our granddaughters. She is the best.

FRANK RUFF JR. serves as the 15th District senator in Virginia. He can be reached at Sen. Ruff@verizon.net, (434) 374-5129 or P.O. Box 332, Clarksville, VA 23927.