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Diary Entry

Friday, Sept. 25, 2015

It’s been a very exhilarating morning to say the least. My little family ventured out on our own from Guadalajara to Purepero, Michoacan. I can’t say I was scared but I was a little cautious as we drove to the little pueblo. I had driven through Mexico so many times as a kid and never feeling afraid.  My dad was with us all the time and trusted he would take care of us.  This time it was different.  I was now a mother.  I had little ones I needed to protect if anything went wrong.  I was now their protector and my husband and myself had taken the role my parents had at one time traveling through the land.  Once we exited the city, the scenery began to change.  It became greener. There were corn fields for miles. It was such an awesome sight. Every so often the green land fields would be sun kissed with a variety of colors. Sometimes you could see burnt-orange specks that would flow like waves over the tall grass.  Other times there were hints of purple peeking through the brush as the rays from the sun peeked through the thick brush. Such a beautiful sight that only my eyes could capture.IMG_4762

Our ride to Purepero was so fun.  I would turn back to look at my kids and my heart would warm up.  We stopped at a little store to buy some “chatarra” for the road. They went crazy buying bread, chips, and drinks.  Our bellies were full the entire way.  I was able to tell stories I had from my visits as a child. They asked questions about the area.  They were wide-eyed until the sweet sound of music, the warmth of the sun and the beauty of the landscape cradled them to sleep.

2 hours later we had reached the outskirts of Purepero. The surrounding became familiar. The sporadic clouds began to get bigger, crisp and low. The sky was getting bluer and the smell of a distant fire had reached my nostrils. I closed my eyes, breathed deeply as the lost memory of the land rekindled the love of this place long forgotten. The town’s entry was no longer the same and we were confused how to enter. But soon enough we saw the old familiar road that led right to the center of town, the plaza. Driving in I remembered how I thought there might be a small chance I would never return because of the rumors of the craziness going on in Mexico. But there I was, driving through the narrow streets just big enough for one car. The familiar adobe walls of the plaza stores I frequently visited on my stays, were all still there. But I’ve been told that it no longer looks the same once I walk into the inner courts. That’s my mission for tomorrow, to check out the area and the changes time has made.

IMG_1344Once I drove past the plaza area I finally headed up to my Great-Uncle’s house.   The street and the outside of the houses still looked the same. I was happy about that. We parked and the kids and I looked around to take it in.  We began to walk up the street. I was feeling it. It felt good and normal. And just like old times, a head peeked out of the house I had always stayed at. Except this time it wasn’t my Great-Aunt greeting us with a big smile, it was her youngest sister.  It felt a bit strange at first but she was so warm in her welcome that the strange feelings quickly faded. It was the new generation greeting us now. But the old generation’s warmth was still there.   I walked in and everything looked like it did every time I visited. Everything appeared to be the same but deep inside I knew it wouldn’t be.  Then I stepped into the back and was a bit in shock to see that a lot of the property was knocked down and a new edification had taken place. The old room, bathroom and part of the kitchen had been replaced with brick walls. The same or not, I was where I wanted to be.  I headed to the back in hopes to see the familiar. I was on a mission to reconnect to an old tree that had been in the back since I could remember.  It always brought back  so many wonderful memories.  I knew that it would be the perfect place to do some writing and soul searching…

 

 

Since my daughter was born 12 years ago, I have had the privilege to say that I am part of 4 generations of women whom have been the first born of the family.   What ‘s even more amazing is that the 4 generations are still alive.  My Abuela was the first born, my mom (Abuela’s daughter) was the first born, I’m the first born and my daughter is also the first born.  It is so special to me to be able to share that with all of you.  God has granted me such a great blessing to be able to enjoy something so marvelous.

4 genAlthough my mom and Abuela seem so humble, meek, submissive and nice they are powerhouses!  One would think that because of all the hardships they have had to face, they would be defeated women.  But they are not.  They have managed to get up and continue life… with smiles and laughs.

In one way or another, the 4 of us have inherited many similar traits.  We have the natural “1st born” syndrome, which is obvious with our “people pleasing” behavior.  The one that is the most notorious for that is Abuela.  She is a human form of a cameleon–taking any shape or form just to make sure no one gets offended, hurt or feel left out.  She will give you her last dollar and even her last Coke just to make you feel good.  If you meet her be ready to be part of the family.

My mom is just like that (especially when it comes to her kids and grandchildren).  For example, once she gets the phone call that “we are on our way” (going over her house), she jumps to the kitchen to have something ready when we arrive.  It could be anything from delicious ice cold lemonade to a full on gourmet salad.  Notice I said salad.  That’s because she is a health freak.  Growing up she never bought us cereal that had sugar.  Man that was stressful! LOL!  Anyway,  I’ve been a healthy adult for the most part.  I probably owe it all to her.  It is the heart of a loving mother, always wanting to give others the best of what she has to offer.

As I write, I’m laying here thinking, “How do I fit into the “1st Born” syndrome.  I guess it’s hard to talk about ones self.  Just like my mom and Abuela, I’m a worry wart.  I think of every possible negative scenario and play it out in my head over and over again.  I worry about everyone and can’t rest until I either get a text or send some “random text” about anything just to see if they are okay.  So either they passed that down to me or it’s just part of being 1st born.

My daughter is also a people-pleaser.  She is always trying to do the right thing to make mom and dad happy.  She definitely is a leader in her own little way.  She isn’t afraid to take risks but not on account of hurting those around her.  She has a mind of her own and is very opinionated but always trying to say things in the nicest possible way.  When it comes to her friends, she will do anything to make sure they are happy (I’m like that too).  She is the best friend you can have.groupcoke2

I can’t tell you enough how honored I am to be part of this heritage.  The ladies in my life aren’t flashy, eccentric nor women who need and want the best of everything.  They do with what they have.  They aren’t domineering women who make you do what they want.  They would rather YOU do what you want.  They aren’t women who give up.  Nor will they let YOU give up.  They are humble, meek, simple yet strong women whom with a smile will lift you and encourage you to be the best that “YOU” can be.  I can only pray that my daughter and I inherit a portion of what they are.  They are an inspiration to me and to those around them.  And for that I honor them.

Silvia

 

 

 

Photo Credit: Mayra Ariza Photography

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