The weekly call with my mother this morning lasted 1 hour 45 minutes. Long talks like this meant she told me more stories. We never plan for such sessions – when it happens, it happens.
My mom started to tell me family stories since 1.5 years ago. The more she told me about her life, the more I appreciated how lucky I was to even exist in this world. A different turn early on would result in her marrying someone other than my father, which means there wouldn’t be me at all.
Their generation didn’t really have much choice though. Lots of important decisions regarding their destiny were made by others – their parents, the government, and various people who had power to control their future.
Two young men featured significantly in my mom’s life before she met my father – one in high school, one in college. For very different reasons, both potential romances were nipped in the bud. Had one of them worked out, my mom’s life would take a totally different path, and my life wouldn’t exist.
Even after my parents met and fell in love, there were numerous challenges and circumstances that threatened to tear them apart. More than once they almost broke up, but their sheer determination to be together no matter what won out at last. Lucky me. From the bottom of my heart, I feel grateful for my parents – they not only gave me life but also sacrificed a lot to raise me to the best of their capabilities.
My mom is more or less writing her memoir. Once in a while she would send me pictures of her hand-written pages and I really enjoy reading them. There are many fascinating stories, some of them touched me into tears. Those stories have to be told one at a time…