God’s plan brought a Brookhaven woman back home

Published 8:34 am Sunday, June 25, 2023

BROOKHAVEN — A little boy yelled “hey,” as his grandmother looked on. She wore a red t-shirt and a brown visor watching her grandkids run around a front yard across the street from the home she grew up in on Edgewood Drive close to where The Dart landed Thursday. 

Mitzie Stewart said her story is about God’s plan being better than hers. 

Stewart was born in Alabama but moved to Brookhaven and into a home on Edgewood Drive when she was eight. She graduated from Brookhaven High School, got married and had plans to travel the world with her husband who was in the Air Force and stay married forever with grandkids and a traditional simple life. 

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Instead, their marriage came crashing down in 1994 and she moved from Columbus to Brookhaven to be with her sister in 1999. She lost her sister in 2002 and father in 2012. Those grandkids she planned for are still running around and one of the kids is basically her grandchild. It all happened differently than what she planned. 

“I feel I could preach a sermon on God’s plan and how I had to learn his plan better. This is unreal. I couldn’t see that in 1994. I was angry, depressed and mad at the world,” Stewart said. “I had negative feelings then. Now I have two beautiful grandchildren. My son and daughter in law. I couldn’t see what was coming. Follow God’s plan, he is better than mine.” 

Stewart has lived in Arkansas and Florida thanks to the Air Force and did not want to come back to Brookhaven initially. Young people can learn from her story, she said. 

She lived with her sister until she died in 2002 from cancer. Stewart said at the time she didn’t understand and was angry. Her sister had moved back home to Brookhaven to be with her but it didn’t work out the way she thought it would. 

“It is funny how life can bring you back here. I’m very blessed and thankful,” Stewart said. 

She attends Central Baptist Church where the pastor is “great,” and gets her to think about God’s plan. Stewart added some of it comes with age. 

Her yard is one of her favorite places to be. Stewart said she enjoys trimming bushes and cutting the grass. Yard work is a therapy where she can get away from the world and relax. It is a passion of hers. 

Stewart spent her working life as a florist and her first job was at Bertha’s. After then, she worked at Rainbows and Shipps, which closed last year. She said it is a funny story about how she ended up working as a florist. 

“Around 11th grade, I wanted more clothes. We had clothes but I wanted more. My dad said ‘no problem’ and got me a job at Bertha’s,” Stewart said. “I started working as a delivery person to have the clothes. I would buy them from the Sassy Cat. My dad put me to work and we had a close relationship. I’m thankful I had him for 85 years.” 

One of her grandsons ran up holding a frog, another gave hugs before running away and the young girl she was looking after asked for a band-aid. Stewart walked across the street to her home to get a band-aid as she waved goodbye.