By Maryalexis Gutierrez
At a young age, my mom dreamed of becoming a teacher. She came to the United States to study English in hopes of making her dream a reality. When she met my dad, she had no idea that her dream would change from being a teacher of many kids to being a fulltime teacher to her own daughter.
My mom had me at 26 years old, so it was hard for her to go to school with a baby who depended on her. She worked hard to maintain food on the table and clothes on my back. She would take me with her to work, babysitting around Point Richmond and Berkeley. She told me. “You were just a little four-year-old running around town with me,” before we moved in with my stepdad.
When I started going to school, my mom would walk home with me. One time in second grade we were walking home and my backpack was really heavy, so I asked my mom if she could help carry it for me. When she grabbed it, she felt how heavy it was and checked inside to see how many books I was carrying, only to find five big stones. She asked me why I had the rocks and I told her they were my pets. She laughed, putting them back on the ground. I still remember this because I could never forget how she smiled at me.
When middle school began, it seemed like I was always arguing with my mom about the littlest things that didn’t really matter. Like the time she said we would go shopping but then there was a change of plan and I got angry with her because I wanted to do it my way.
Now as a teen, we still argue a little but I’ve learned to appreciate my mom. She has always supported me with my writing and gone to my performances to cheer me on.
She is actually the person who inspires my writing. One of my first pieces of poetry was about her and when I read it to her, she started to cry. She told me they were tears of joy.
Even though she didn’t become a teacher like she had planned, she learned something else she loves to do. She preaches in our church and sometimes she teaches the kids as well. I go with her when she preaches to support her, the way she supported me when I had my performances.
On Mother’s Day, I write this for her unconditional love for me. I write this for the inspiration she is. I write this to thank her for dedicating her life to me.