My mom had me when she was 16 years old and in foster care. I’m 14 now, and I can’t wrap my head around what that must have been like for her.
Being a mother at such a young age meant my mom had to make sacrifices. She put college on hold for several years. She focused on providing for our family and raising me. She worked multiple jobs. When I was younger, she worked as waitress and a tailor.
Now, she works at Oakland Housing Authority, and she’s still studying for a master’s degree at Cal State East Bay.
After coming home from work, my mom cooks dinner and cleans the house. She asks me how school was and what I learned that day. After dinner, she helps me with homework, then reads to me until I fall asleep. It’s astonishing how much time and energy she has for me at the end of a long day.
My mom has taught me perseverance and grit. But more than that, she has demonstrated to me that there is strength in love.
Her resilience and grace are traits that I aspire to.