a story of her.

On the 21st of July 1966, she was born. Her radiant smile and plumb rose cheeks made anyone awe at her beauty and innocence. She crawled on her knees as baby’s do, and slowly took her first steps. Her first steps towards who she would become as an adult, the mother she would be, the sister, daughter, cousin, friend, and confidant she would soon one day become. But she has no idea yet.

She grows up in a conflicted home, torn between violence, love, and loyalty, her once two-parent home is now lead by her mother. Her mother’s lips no longer bleed, her mother’s face is no longer the colour of the sky. She no longer hears excuses such as “it’s ok honey, I just fell off the bed.” She slowly begins to grow into the skin of a strong woman. She learns to seize the day, runs away from home late at night to listen to her favourite artists at various concert venues, only to be grounded in the morning. Her adventures take her in the boy’s bathroom in high school, where she sits on a toilet seat, looking out the window, smoke from a cheap cigarette escaping her blood-red plumb lips. She may wonder about her life, what will come of her, will she be stuck in this little town of hers, or will she become someone.

She meets someone. She stays for five years, but then decides she no longer loves him. She meets someone else. He takes advantage and cheats. She leaves. She travels to another country, experiencing different people, jobs, lifestyles, but she comes back home one day. She finds another someone. This one helps her father a child. A beautiful baby boy, with eyes as blue as a turbulent sea on a sunny day, and hair with radiant brown curls. But this man also leaves, selfish in his worries and personal issues, and she is once again left to her own strength. This time, however, she’s got a little man by her side.

Christmas. Her mother gave her little boy a library card as a present, so she decides to go to the library down the street. There, she sees him. Sitting on a stool, crouched down, eyebrows furrowed as he reads something, she approaches him, recognizing that stance, that head, that back. He turns and her heart skips a beat. It’s him! The one she sometimes was able to meet up with but with whom it never worked out, because it was the wrong time or wrong day. She clutches the hand of her little boy, and quickly states she is a single mother. He looks at her and replies, with a shy smile, “I’m a single father.” She won’t let him go this time.

This is when their story begins, but let’s not forget that this is her story as well. After a year or two, they decide to get married. Humbly and charmingly, they go to a small chapel in the city, get married with their witnesses present, and proceed to celebrate at a public park. Friends bring a cooler with drinks, and each person pays for their food. Money was tight, so a big celebration was out of the question. But it did not bother them; their love, their families, their friends, were more than enough to make that day invaluable.

Aspiring to be a nurse, putting herself before others and learning at school to become a hero for others, she also helps a little someone grow inside of her for nine long months. This time, a baby girl. She bikes to school, her baby pedalling around her belly all the way to school and back. She would’ve preferred to wait to have this baby girl until she was done with nursing school, but the world doesn’t always work the way we want it to.

Her beauty would make any Disney princess be ashamed. Her lips redder than snow white, she radiates joy, strength, serenity, and goofiness to all those around her. Her baby bump and the love she shows her soon-to-be born baby girl makes all the little girls in the world wish they had a mother like her. He also sees this every day, holding her close and gently cupping her belly in the warmth of his hands, feeling his baby girl approach him, the skin of her belly the only barrier between them.

Suddenly, it’s time. She feels her water break, dripping down her legs. Clutching her belly, she yells for him. He’s at the park with their little boy, when he hears her and quickly gets back home, their little boy in his arms. Of all days, the car doesn’t start today. He puts the key again and again in the ignition, she’s on the front seat, clasping her hand on the handle while the other rests on her stomach. Their little boy in the backseat, aware that his little sister is coming. Finally, the car starts, and off they go to meet the new addition to the family.

After growing for nine long months in her belly, she finally hugs her little baby girl. The first thing her little girl does is stretch her long, dancer-like arms in front of her tired eyes. As in slow motion, she sees her new baby stretch and extend her long arms across her, imagining all the beautiful possibilities that this new soul she’s put into the world may have one day. In the heart of Paris, this little family begins to continue blossoming, but more adventures will take them across the world, across the seas, through deserts, mountains, jungles, lakes, and cities.

She gives up her nursing career for a job opportunity he receives on the other side of the world. They discuss it, but she still decides to make the sacrifice, which he will burden for a very, very long time. Their adventure takes them all to countries across South America. She learns a new language, then another language. Spanish and English become part of their vocabulary. She stays home and takes care of their little boy and girl, watching them slowly develop into their own person, their personalities shining through. She endures tantrums, crying, anger, and all the other hardships that come with having to stay home with the kids.

She learns to bake bread. She learns mosaic. She drives everyday her little’s to school, making them homemade lunches every single day. She gets a job! Working provides her with a new skill set, a new occupation which she is deserving of. She stills picks up her littles from school. She forgets one time, and gets joked on about it for many months, to which she gently tries to reply that although she may have forgotten once, she has always been there. To this, her little’s just shrug it off and go play with their friends. Her strength and courage may not be fully taken into consideration by her little’s, but just you wait, when they will be older, they will be able to look back and thank you for everything you have done, endured, taught, learned, and scarified for them.

Her little girl remembers a few times she caught her crying. Her wall slowly broken down, but able to rebuild itself with the strength and love of family and friends, but often, rebuilding it by herself.

One late night on vacation, in the countryside, when visiting her side of the family, she had one too many drinks while playing scrabble with her mother. Her little girl sits by her side, and he sits at the edge of the table. Slowly, she starts laughing and getting a bit louder, as the drinks take over, but still in control of her actions. Suddenly, he abruptly gets annoyed at her behaviour, to which we all get quiet, the silence of the crickets outside the only sound. Her smile slowly fades, looking from him to both of us, and sudden tears start flooding her eyes, as she quickly makes her escape to their bedroom upstairs.

The little girl looks at her father, fury burning in her eyes, unaware of the effect of alcohol, and makes her way upstairs to where she is crying. She consoles her in her little body, not understanding where this flood of tears is coming from, but still holding her mom close to her, just like she held the little girl every time she cried, fell, had tantrums. This did not happen often, but when it did, her little girl would always put herself in the middle of her and him, asking to stop the argument. This loving household rarely saw arguments, but adults argue once and again, either due to miscommunication, tiredness, or plain dumbness. The arguments were rare and always short lived, love alway conjuring a solution, an apology, or a new outlook at life.

No matter what life threw at her, she always came back up stronger and more powerful. She got a master’s degree at 50. She travelled to Africa on her own for work. She learned yoga and meditation. She taught herself to knit. She loves colouring books. Her little girl remembers times in 2nd and 3rd grade when homework to colour in pages were given and asked her mom to help. Her face lit up as she took on her little girls homework. Little did she know that her little girl always knew how much she loved to colour in books, and would only ask to be polite, knowing she would always agree excitedly.

She supports her family. She is a hidden hero. Her kindness transcends through time, her sensitivity to people’s needs and wants unparalleled. She is patient. She is understanding. She is beautiful. She is loved more than she knows.

From: your little girl.

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