A Daughter's Tribute
Once you become a mother, you are a mother forever. Looking back through the years of how am I going to raise the girls, the major decisions were not based on the self-help and how-to books I read, but how i mimic my mother when she was raising me.
I recalled most of my childhood from the pictures I keep in my family album. My mother will re-tell the story of each picture, and it always depict the good times. There is nothing sad that emanate from these photos. She will mention the names of the people in it like my uncles, aunts, cousins and family friends. Even though I don't recall most of them them, she will softly tell me, "You will, when you meet them again". It gives me a sense of belonging. Her stories made me feel loved by many.
My mother smiles often. She laughs at the slightest funny thing at home. Her heart is light and her pleasant character won her many friends.
I see her cry when she is hurt. The pain shows in her eyes when she feels wronged. But she can forgive easily and let things go without remorse.
I can definitely share with her the stories of my day, while listening patiently, without judgement the "funny" and "weird" things I tell her. She encourages me to move forward when I am down and celebrates my achievement, regardless of its size. She is my best friend.
I looked on child rearing not only as a work of love and duty but as a profession that was fully as interesting and challenging as any honorable profession in the world and one that demanded the best I could bring to it." -- Rose Kennedy
My mom is well-educated and her parents are well-off. She married my dad after an ideal courtship but he couldn't handle well their financial success. He became an alcoholic after I was born. For many years I knew their marriage was tumultuous. I heard them argue a lot but she did not attempt to affirm with me her marital struggles. She dealt with my father privately.
Her life was not perfect but she chose to do many things in her lifetime putting me first on it.
Since 2006, we have been living very far apart from each other. Half-way across the globe, I am re-establishing my career and taking care of my own family. My girls are growing up fast.
My mom became very sick. The best doctors that I can afford were taking care of her. I constantly kept in touch with my mother and my father. Her health seems to fail each passing month. Then I receive the dreaded phone call. My mom has passed away...
I cried and grieved. The pain and heartache of losing her is numbing. Even though I am aware that she is ill, the hope of her recovery burns bright in front of me. Any age will not prepare me for the time of her demise. And if I can decide to my heart's desire, I do not want her to go, ever.
I missed my opportunity of being close to my mom on her last days. I didn't have the chance to kiss her goodbye, or stroke her hair, or hold her hand for the last time...
We plan to see many new places together that will no longer be. It dawns upon me that the wit and laughter she does all the years, is her wisdom disguised in comedy.
I miss her very dearly. My mom is a strong woman with poise and grace. The cardinal rule with her is Respect. She taught me the virtue of patience and showed me the value of hard-work.
She lived a life by example; forgive and let go. What's in your heart reflects on your face. Her character of forgiving and letting go is one of her precious gifts to myself.
Her picture now sits in a conspicuous place at home. I get to see her always this way. In confusing situations, I look at her photo and start to think deeper of what she might have to say. The memory of her wise words gives me strength, direction and my needed comfort.
Every time I think of my mom, I am starting to feel that maybe I am becoming more like a true piece of herself... I hope I am making her proud today and she is right there, smiling at me from heaven.
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