Lilia May11


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Okay, so what is a mother?

I ask because today is the day to say ‘love you’ to mom. Great mom, best mom, wonderful mom, mommy, mama, mother.

But, whether we really think about it or not, these women are people, beyond that title.

For me, I just want to take a moment to talk about Lilia, the woman who is my mother.

Now, before I start I must let you know I do love my mother and she is still alive so this is not going to be one of those I wish I still had my mom around (I do) or glad she is out of my life (I do not) kind of rambling.

This is about taking some time to talk about the woman who had a history with dreams, aspirations, and a life before I came into the picture. She was a little girl with friends and dreams, a teenager with friends and dreams, and a woman with friends and dreams who had expectations of what she wanted out of her future.

She grew up, went to school, got a job, fell in love, got married, and then I came along. In between all those things was her developing identity as a person – not a mother.

Not sure I was what she envisioned for a son. I will tell you she does not understand my choices in life. But still she loves me. I know that for a fact.

But still, this woman has friends, relatives, co-workers, and acquaintances who see her and choose to be with her for her own merits, beyond and apart from the woman I know as mom.

But what if she was not my mother?

Would I choose to have her in my life is she was a ‘stranger’? Someone that, through decisions and circumstance, I just happen to meet, say as a co-worker or neighbor? Would I love her still?

Well first, if that were the case, I would tell her that her son was a jerk sometimes and that he should not take her for granted. I absolutely do, unfairly so at times. She will always be there, just like my father.

But I guess my love for her, as a son, is so great that to think of her as anything other than mom would be like a demotion.

Yes, she is a woman, a sister, a wife, a friend, a person.

But she is my mother.

Seeing it objectively, this was a choice this woman made; to nurture and love another human being without knowing what the outcome would be. She could have done a number of things with her life, and she would have succeeded at them. But she became the foundation of my life. Probably terrified at every uncertainty for her son, unable to relate to the choices he made, but continued on from the moment of birth till now and everyday thereafter. Although the delivery might have been unpolished, every word out of her mouth, no matter how it came out, was basically “I love you.”

Change the way you dress . . . I love you.
Don’t do that . . . I love you.
Clean up . . . I love you.
And so on.

As I have grown up and noticed that not everyone saw her as a mother but as these other aspects that make up her life, I have realized the blessing I have to be the one who got to call her mom.

She has not failed at that task and for that I am beyond indebted as a human being. As a son I love her. For being my mom. For being the person who balanced her dreams and aspirations and put them second to doing everything from wiping my butt to being a part of my life and that of her grandchildren.

Te quiero mama.