Skip to main content

the language of mothers


Today, my mom turns 70.

It's really just in these latter years that I am finally able to see and feel the grand fabric of our stories that have been woven together, like a single tapestry that holds all the threads of our relationship as mother and daughter; as two moms with very different birth stories, as daughters with our own mother wounds, as separate yet deeply connected women, as soul mates who somehow found one another other across oceans of hope and loss and love, one needing a home and the other needing a child.

All of it is stitched together. The tiny miracles, the heartbroken and wonder-filled, messy and imperfect.

Every year I think I see her more clearly. Time reveals, perspective broadens and evolves, and more stories rise to the surface.

She has always been a warrior woman, middle child, rebel soul, Gemini spirit, but I can now feel how tender her heart truly is in a way I never could as a young girl. I see beneath her fierce exterior, the soft and fleshy parts of her sentimentality and love.

I know what a devoted partner she is to my father, through all the years of triumphant celebrations and especially the ones spent fighting for life.

Every moment deserves a party, she taught me. Live now. All the joy.

I see the fierce love she has for my boys as their "candy" Nana. I know how they see her, because I saw my Nana the same exact way. Part Fairy Godmother, part superhero, and all heart and the softest place to land. It was one gift I had wished for my kids long before ever becoming a mother, to be awash in the kind of love only a grandmother can sprinkle on. It's why I never moved too far away.

Hold your family close. Life is so much sweeter together. We need one another.

I know what a fun and loyal friend she has always been, over hours of coffee and Virginia Slims, inside circles of show tune sing-a-longs and backyard barbecues, and in adventuring together to far away places despite her fear of flying.

Never let your fear hold you back. Explore with abandon. An experience is always far more valuable than something you can hold in your hand.  

And as a mother, as her daughter, I profoundly understand that although our story is not born of flesh and blood, the language of mothers is still the same.... a deep and abiding, bone and marrow, unconditional ocean of love. She taught me that language.

My mom has shaped my world in countless, significant, and beautiful ways. Even in our struggles to fully know one another as individual human beings, she has been the greatest teacher in my life. Even now, I feel the safe womb of her warrior heart every single day.

Happy Birthday, Mom.

For every wish that has come true, and for all the wishes yet to come!

I see you. I love you. I honor you. Most of all, I am so grateful and so proud to be your daughter.





Comments

  1. This is amazing and I hope your mother had a blast on her 70th birthday. I am planning a small party at local Chicago venues for my mom too but not sure about the theme and planning. Thinking about using services of a planner.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Inner Alchemy Cards: Build A New World Deck

Our next make-your-own card adventure is finally here! Inner Alchemy Collage: Build A New World Deck (online) is an artful exploration of language, learning, inspiration, and collaboration, that delves into important ideas around activism and systems of oppression. This is a way for us to examine and disrupt harmful dominant narratives, tell new stories, and inspire one another to use our creativity and personal power to help build the collective world we all want to live in! In the end you will have a beautiful and meaningful handmade deck of 35 oracle cards to use as unique a tool for guidance and reflection whenever you need it.  I'm your host,  Mindy Tsonas Choi , an artist, organizer, radical belonging activist, and the founder of the Be Seen Project - a grassroots initiative resourcing BIPOC artist and makers working in activism. Join me along with other stellar artists, makers and co-creators who have also been exploring social justice and activism as part of their creativ

The Cost of Selling Belonging

As someone who use to sell belonging and believed I was creating something universally magical , I now have fresh eyes on the harm that I once caused. I understand what can (and was) incredibly healing and impactful for some, was at the same time excluding, marginalizing and undervaluing others. First, to anyone who ever felt like they did not belong to anything I created because they were unable to afford it or felt like they did not have the social capitol to join -  I am sincerely sorry for not seeing you sooner .   To our entire creative community as a whole, I urge us all to think about belonging in new and equitable ways, and to do the work of dismantling these hierarchical structures that leave so many people out of the circle. We all deserve to have access to creativity and belonging, and I'd go so far as to say both are fundamental basic human needs and rights. Selling belonging can look like... Creating spaces and experiences that can only be accessed by buying in at one,

what's in a name?

It’s May 14, 2020 and I’m on a transnational call with a social worker and translator of the SOS Children’s Village offices in South Korea. It’s 7pm my time and 9am the next day in Korea, which adds to the surreal quality of the moment. It is my first long distance call following my inquiry with the organization documented to be my first place of entry into the system, found in my Korean records (the acquisition of which is an incredible story in and of itself). It was July 21, 1972 and I was 5 months old. It’s a small miracle the organization still exists, and an even bigger blessing that they took such time and care in searching for information and to talk it all through with me in person. I try not to cry as the call connects. What I learn is a lot of small details about that fateful evening which amount to nothing traceable, but still feel like huge missing pieces of my life. I was left near the entrance around 7pm under a small tree, wrapped in a blanket with only a name scribble