The Strongest Woman I’ve Ever Known

1

December 14, 2014 by Roe

My mom is a beacon of light, a treasure trove of strength, and is intelligent beyond her age.

When I reflect on my now 24 years, I realize I didn’t always get along with her; We were always butting heads, especially when I was a teenager. I’d go North, she’d say, “South”. I’d suggest Black, she’d say, “White”, <insert The Beatles’ “Hello Goodbye” here>, etc. But I suppose after experiencing the world on my own for a bit, and observing my friends and acquaintances (of past and present) and their relationships with their mothers, I realize I have it pretty good. And that I won the mom lottery. And she’s pretty much the best.

And I don’t think I’ve ever met a stronger woman in all my life.

My mom was born in Sydney, Australia, partially raised in Sicily, and then came over to the U.S. at 7-years-old. She never had it easy and in fact found herself having to overcome difficulties translating for her parents as a child whether it was haggling the price for new furniture, finding a doctor, or buying a house. She learned English, graduated high school, was the first in her family to go to college, she graduated, became a U.S. citizen, and later spent many years working well-paying (albeit stressful) white collar corporate jobs to support her family.

During those years, her presence at home was scarce. She’d go to work early and come home late and have to do it all over again the next day, and I think that’s where much of our discord began; When we both finally became conscious of my growing-up, we weren’t sure who the other was anymore.

And we’d yell at each other in shopping malls and roll our eyes at each other in church, but I think it’s true when it’s said that “time heals all things” and that things make sense when you get older; Of course they do because you gain more life experience the older you get.

And I know Mother’s Day is not even close, but I just feel the need to write this all out and tell you that my mom is my best friend. Because during this present time of uncertainty and emotional unrest, she has been relentlessly kind, caring, supportive, and understanding in ways I never thought possible.

And since my grandmother has moved in with us and my mom has started going back to school, I’ve had to pick up the slack while she’s gone and I now understand how difficult keeping a house and taking care of another human being is, especially when you’re doing most of if single-handedly by yourself. When I sit down exhausted and tired, she somehow finds the energy and motivation to get up and do more. I don’t understand it. Maybe it’s one of those “when I have kids, maybe I’ll understand” things.

But whatever it is, I know I love her very much.

I know my perspective has changed in regards to a lot of things over the years, and this is one of them.

Love your moms, everyone! They made you, they birthed you, ’tis the season.

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