14 June 2010

Take the square root of my inspiration and you get...

Dedicated to my mother, Victoria.

It's been only a few years since I started inquiring about who my mother actually was. Since she passed away nearly 18 years ago, her memory has been kept alive in my family by her accomplishments and more or less, her defeat by breast cancer. I was just 10 years old when she passed, so barely having developed a relationship with her, I was left with mere images of my mother recounted numerous times through photographs and mealtime reminisces. From what I had gathered, she was a brilliant University of Chicago post-grad, an aspiring medical student whose pathway was detoured by illness. The more I thought about it (in my adult life), the more I realized that for most of my childhood, the only mother I knew was the sick version. For some reason, I never bothered to explore who she was until one day I made a face. Well, it was more like an eye-roll. My cousin said to me, "That is SOOOOOO a face your mom would make!" What? My mother was an actual person?! She wasn't a saint? A heroine? She actually rolled her eyes? She used expletives? This was the beginning of a beautiful exploration...

I began asking my extended family to dish some stories on Vicki. I didn't want to know about her valedictorian ways or super-woman feats, but I wanted to know why she was cooking organic in the 80's, how she appreciated good gossip and was always getting dirt on the latest bachelors in town for her cousins, and how she was unfailingly sarcastic and quick-witted. Slowly, I began to piece her together and at the same time I had enkindled myself (or at least the half that I could attribute to her). So, sarcasm is genetic? Bohemian tendencies, too? A palate for raw foods and tofu is a heritable trait, apparently.

With that being said, I've never wanted to romanticize the memory of my mother nor make her a taboo subject or a "spooky" one. But as this blog is a transcript of sparks, ignites, likes, and loves- my mental pen-to-paper, I have to give credit to the spinner of my spool, the woman who fed me whole wheat crust-soy cheese pizza in '89....

my muse, ma mére.


  1. Amazing. Your resemblance is uncanny. What a beautiful woman she was. You and your mom are total soul sisters....soy crust! Tofu! You're kidding! Apparently the apple doesn't fall far from the tree...thanks for sharing.

  2. this is a gorgeous piece of prose. thanks for sharing :)