Two weeks ago the flu colonized my immune system. I lay in bed for what seemed like an eternity. I cried for my mami each and every one of those days. I am nearly 30 years old and I’m not kidding. I cried for my mami…sometimes for hours. This recent incident and the many hours of subsequent heavily-medicated-induced hallucinations forced me to think of all of the women who, along with my mother, cared for me as a child, as an adolescent and as a young adult. With Mother’s Day around the corner, I’m reflecting on all of the amazing women who loved, nurtured, protected, fed, instructed, encouraged, disciplined, motivated and inspired me. It takes a community to raise a child and it took a strong community of women to raise me.
I’d like to take the time today to thank all of those women: the babysitters, teachers, dentists, waitresses, sweatshop workers, cooks, seamstresses, lunch ladies, doctors, nurses, farmers, bus drivers, bakers, artists, hairdressers, dancers, bodega owners, nosy neighbors, crazy neighbors, grandmothers, godmothers, aunties, sisters, cousins, step-sisters, friends and cherished memories of lost loved ones. You were my role-models: my beautiful, intelligent, bossy, courageous, hard-working, curious, persistent, flawed, funny, brave, nostalgic, moody, warm, tired, gossiping, immigrant, loving, crazy, nurturing, bilingual-enough, selfless, angry, honest, struggling and complicated community of miracle workers. I took you for granted but I will never forget the lessons you taught me. Thank you. A million times…thank you.
To my own mother – You amazed me then. You amaze me now. I needed you then. I continue to need you now. I love you more than words could ever faithfully express. Please love me. All of me. Please.
Still gay, still me,