It was the kind of homework assignment a self-conscious Latina dreaded most. Picture if you will, 1964. LBJ is in the White House. Muhammad Ali beats Sonny Liston and is crowned heavyweight champion of the world. The Beatles make their U.S. debut on The Ed Sullivan Show. And me? I’m in Queens, attending school at P.S. 154, sitting in the second row of Mrs. Green’s third grade class. Oh, and I’m sweating bullets. For Mrs. Green, my third grade tea … Read More
There was always something missing.I searched in vain for years, took refuge in books early on.
I looked for the bigger picture, sometimes envying people who had a faith so strong that it carried them through life’s little and bigger dramas.
Becoming a mum, I found a whole new me.It gave me more understanding and renewed compassion.
From the moment this little baby started growing inside me, nothing has ever mattered more for me than the well-being of my children.
I have found Love now, yes the big one !
I found myself, finally understanding the little girl I once was.
I now am loved unconditionally and feel secure in that knowledge.
We have lived through tough and traumatic times as a result of my health but our love lives on , growing a little more everyday.
- Where do you come from ?
- Does it define you ?
- What if you were born there by accident ?
- What if you ‘d never actually lived there ?
- What if that place has some hurtful connection ?
Why do people put so much importance on where you were born ?
Where do you come from? Oh, but where were you born ?
I was born in some place, it is not where I come from !
It does not define , should not define me !
I was only a baby who came into this world too early, by accident
This place, forever associated with me, because it appears on all my documents.
So don’t change your perception of me once you learn where I come from, because you’d be wrong and I’m so tired of having to justify myself, my roots or my nationality !
So think about it next time you harass some poor soul…but where do you come from…really …?
related post :
Some people spend their lives in anticipation of what might happen in the future, longing for things they desire, a better job, a better house, winning the lottery…
Instead of living for now, they believe that “if” and “when” are the answers to their happiness.
“When I have …” or “If only…”
They forget that tomorrow might never happen, that life is precious and should be embraced there and now.
“You don’t get to choose how you’re going to die,or when.You can decide how you’re going to live now” Joan Baez
If you don’t learn to live for the moment, what makes you think you will enjoy tomorrow better ?
Sure, your life might improve but as an adult you are in control of your destiny and your happiness.
“Man is fully responsible for his nature and his choices. ” J-P Sartre
As a child, I was vulnerable I might have had no power over what was happening but I chose to use my imagination and often retreated in my own universe.
As an adult, I took charge and broke the vicious circle that had been casting its shadow over my family.
We do not have to suffer our lives or wait for some miracle to happen so let’s embrace it.Even on the darkest of days, there is always something to be grateful about, some small mercy.
“Remember, this is now,and now,and now.Live it, feel it and cling to it.I want to become acutely aware of all that I’ve taken for granted” S.Plath
My mother had a habit of squirrelling money away, not that she really needed to, it was her safety net.When she died,it caused my father a huge headache, trying to trace all her different accounts, some active, others not.
She wasn’t materialistic and never spent much on herself, when she did, she’d hide the fact or felt obliged to justify herself.In some ways, I am a little bit like that too but I think it’s all too common for mums in general.
She did once tell me the story of how when her grandmother was dying, she told my mum where she had hidden her little nest egg and she wanted her to have it.My mother, being a dutiful daughter told her mother who promptly took it all away.
My mother was at the time married to a violent man.He beat her up whilst pregnant with her son.In those days, divorce was much frowned upon.Eventually, despite her hopes of ever happy family, she came to the conclusion that she would have to leave.
She was a formidable woman, not the kind you can push around easily, she was also very strong-willed and stubborn, it runs in the family, on the women side anyway.
It goes to show abuse knows no boundaries or classes.
My mother came from a very well to do family, her divorce was seen a complete disgrace.She struggled to raise her son without any help, her own wealthy parents never lifting a finger.
By the time she met my father, she’d done well for herself and had some security.She never fully trusted my father, even though they had a child together, yes, me.
I always remember her telling me that when I married, I was to hide all assets and not share everything I owned.
Sadly, she never did get to enjoy the benefits of her hard work and savings, she became very ill and died when I was a teenager.I watched her becoming very weak, a shadow of herself, yet, she could still terrify everybody, myself included.
I’m not materialistic at all and dislike talking or even thinking about money.I’m not a great spender either but do enjoy splashing out on my children.
When it comes to trust, I could not live with someone I didn’t trust wholly and completely.I’m not just talking about money but much more than that, this deep knowledge that you are loved and respected.
Friends who know my background have often wondered how I could talk about my mother in a positive way after the childhood I had.Well, first of all, she was my mother and I loved her, growing up, I didn’t know any different.
Piecing it altogether, I can reflect on the fact she also had an unhappy childhood and she endured many struggles.Her illness and subsequent death were an almighty shock.
The more I grew in myself, the more I understood her and how difficult life had been for her at times.
Even after all these years, I still think of her and understand a little more all the time.There are many things I wish I could tell her as an adult and no longer the frightened little girl I was.
When I became a mum myself, I watched friends with their mums feeling a little pang, we wouldn’t have had that sort of relationship, I know but…
I strive to do the best I can for my children, hopefully being a fraction of the mum I want to be.Nothing else matters more to me than being a loving mum with happy and well-balanced children.No achievement of any kind could prevail over this.
I’m the lucky one, I broke the vicious circle in my family, friends will know what I’m talking about.No matter what happens in your past, you can change and prevent history from being repeated.
P.S. I cannot re-read myself at this point,too raw.
This post was a long-time coming, I just had to find it in me to write it down.
It has also been inspired by my wonderful friend Ana and her post: http://www.womenontheverge.net/blogs/entry/Is-Money-a-Dirty-Word-
She is also the founder of a wonderful community, go check it out : http://www.womenontheverge