My mother was a phenomenal human being. She was such a beautiful soul that even her enemies (if she had any) loved her deep down inside. It may sound cliche but she really did light up a room when she walked into it. All eyes would be on her. People gravitated to her. They wanted to know her and be part of her life. Her energy was magnetic and you can physically see how people were drawn to her. I can’t tell you how many people have told me, “I don’t know what it is but there is something about her…”
My crazy Mom had a childlike sense of humor and found the strangest things silly. I remember one time watching her change her dressings for her catheter. Her plastic gloves kept sticking to the tape and she was laughing so hard I had to finish it for her. It’s those simple memories I cherish the most.
My Mom had a heart the size of the heavens. She would buy construction workers in the neighborhood hot chocolate when it was cold and water when it was hot. She walked around with food she wasn’t even going to eat just to give it to a homeless person. She loved animals too. She would feed the pigeons on the roof of our building and stray cats on the block. Any time someone stopped her on the street to ask for help she went above and beyond by taking them to their destination if necessary. It used to make me laugh when she would speak to a foreigner and mimic their accent as she spoke to them. I asked her why she did that and she said it made them feel more comfortable speaking to her. She cared about things like that.
My Mother LOVED music and dancing. I would watch her face as she listened to a great Salsa song and you could see how the music physically affected her. She was ALWAYS singing and dancing around the house. She always had a song on her lips just as ready as a smile.
My Mom was wise. She wasn’t book smart but she was one of the smartest people I have ever known. She taught me things like: don’t just learn from your own mistakes, learn from the mistakes of those around you; treat people better than you want to be treated; teach people through your actions; nevertrust anyone but respect them as if you do. I’ll never forget her pearls of wisdom. They got me through some really rough times.
My Mother was also strong. If I told you half of the things she had been through, you couldnt even tolerate the pain of just listening to it. The amazing thing was that she never let her troubles harden her. They just made her more compassinate and empathetic.
The most amazing thing to me about my Mother was her capacity for love and forgiveness. If my Mom loved you (she loved everyone) you felt it. Not in a figuritive sense either. You actually FELT the love transfer from her body to yours through her smile, her kiss, her embrace. Her love was empowering. She made you feel like anything was possible because through her love for you she believed in you. The only attribute that outshined her ability to love unconditional was her ability to forgive and forgive in such a way that allowed you to forgive yourself.
I have never met another human being like my Mother and I expect that I never will. Many people say I’m a lot like her. As much as I appreciate the compliment I know I will never be her. My Father’s DNA blessed me with a hot temper which made sure of that LOL What I know for sure is that I live my life in her honor and the world is a better place because she spent 34 very full years in it.
I love my mother with my heart and my soul. I look forward to the day I see her again. I know she is proud of the woman I have become and I know she has my back every step of the way. She is my light, my guardian angel. She is my beautiful Mother Aida.
Happy Birthday Momma!!! See you on the flipside! I want that rematch in Crazy 8’s!!!
RIP Aida Esther Cruz 5/4/58-12/16/92