The shape of who you are
I still remember when I was a little child. Every Saturday morning we took a bus to her house and spend all day there. There was nothing much to do and half of the time my mother was arguing with grams. Anyone that gets annoyed at my strong beliefs and opinions should notice that those qualities only come from one woman: Grams. She passed them to my mother (although she doesn’t admit it) and to me.
Every summer I used to stay there for a week. A week my sister and I dreaded long before classes were over. But I think it was all about discipline. We woke up every day at 5 AM to listen the radio Mass and after that to pray the rosary. After that we could go and take a small nap to wake up and do chores. The most tedious ones were cutting out all bad herbs of the garden (by hand) and the pea collection. Others more interesting were crafts (we did rosaries and other stuff)and cooking. I was 7 years old and it continued until I was around 10.
Now I realize how much I learned: I became a disciplined boy, turned an expert in dominoes (my grandmother was an amazing player), learned how to verbally fight others, turned into a conspiracy believer and a closed minded religious boy (the tale on how I became an atheist and a libertarian will come soon). My self esteem portrayed that of a 60something strong and self righteous woman I used to hold her hand.
After I turned 10, I got more involved in church (after all I was in a Catholic School), assisted the Boy Scouts (the tale on what really happened there will be written as a magazine style piece essay on December)and by 19 my frequent trips to gram’s house were greatly reduced. College came in and my mind was totally changed.
When I was about 6, she got a small infection on one leg: a cellulite, a different kind of thing than the more common women’s cellulite (like the one Deelishis has all over her ass). Due to her stubbornness (a trait I adamantly continue to show)she missed doctor appointments (the cellulite was like a roller coaster: gradually left and then showed up again), fought nurses, got hospitalized so many times. It’s being 18 years, the infection got worse. She lost her leg.
When my mother told me, I don’t know what I thought (mostly because I’m terrified of amputations) but also because one of those persons that has shaped your life, be it in a good or a bad way, now looks defeated.
I couldn’t help but wonder will I end up defeated? Emotionally? Physically? All I could think is that I have a strong will to succeed, a thing that apparently I inherited from no one and that sets me apart from the rest of my family. I will hold dearly the memories and anecdotes of those that helped me being who I am right now and move forward trying to avoid defeat.
Defeat, that’s one of my biggest fear