Mom

We only went once to the little town, puebla actually, my mother was born in and lived the first 12 years of her life. It was dirty. Not in the traditional sense. It was void of any concrete or asfault. Just dirt rodes and adobe buildings. None of us got out of the car. I remember being somewhat amazed. I also remember her not looking outside, reading the ever present book she carries. Not the same book. She reads lots of books, all the time. A new one every few days. 🙂

Mom is a reader. The poverty she rose from is quite remarkable.

I don’t speak Spanish because as a child my mother was still not much of an English speaker. My father wasn’t much better, but he was functional, having been in the army and having gone to college. I did know some Spanish as a child but was always told to speak only English, even when they spoke to me in Spanish.

My mother was always a volunteer at my elementary school. For some unknown reason my 4th grade teacher, Mrs Arnold, talked into taking night classes to get her GED, as she had only completed up to the 6th grade.

The self taught scholar was about to catch fire.

She started taking night classes in 1975 and by 1982 had earned her Master’s degree in Education.

She was hird as an instructional assistant in 1979 and told her principal that if he didn’t hire her as a full time regular teacher the next year, she was not coming back. She had her own class the next year.

During the time she pursued her education I called her the tasmainian devil. I would wake up each day and she would already be up and stuff had gotten done around the house. The family would be served breakfast and out the door she went. When I came home the house would be empty. Then around 4 or 5 a tornado would blow through the door. More stuff got done in the house and before the tornado left hot food was on the stove or oven. As I went to bed each night I could hear her either typing a paper or listening to her and my father working on her assignments together. I am told she helped my father a lot through college, mostly typing up his assignments. Not her first experience with a language she didn’t know. She had an uncle that taught her to “read” English and gave her books to read, and she did 🙂

Within 7 years she earned her GED, A.A., B.A., and M.A. All while running a household with a husband and 3 children. In my opinion, the husband was just as much and sometimes more work than her 3 children. She took care of that 😀

I don’t remember the sequence of events but it went something like this. She used to do all his ironing, even boxers and handkerchiefs! One day he found fault with her ironing. Next I knew all his clothes were removed from the closets and drawers and piled on the bed. Another time he criticized her washing. She stopped washing his clothes. Final thing, the guy was a little slow what can say, he criticized her cooking. That meal wound up in the sink.

To his credit, he learned to wash, iron, cook, and other household chores. We children also learned early to do those things for ourselves also.

They both came along way together. Having been born and raised very traditionally and poor, they transitioned rather smoothly into middle class Americans.

Education is a powerful thing. The desire to make yourself into the person you see yourself as, and not how others see you, was very strong in my parents.

I’ll probably blog tomorrow, but if I don’t, Happy Thanksgiving!

My blog views were way down yesterday 😦 Is everyone really that busy?

See you soon! Enjoy!

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3 Responses to Mom

  1. Camille says:

    Wish I had known that about tia before I went back to school. I could have used some domestic tutoring such as she gave the family. Always knew she was amazing;)

  2. Cristina says:

    Wow, what a great peek into the life of a strong woman.

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