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The Price I Paid

Life was a whirlwind, never enough arms to haul and carry groceries, babies, and books. I seldom had enough time to hold and play with my little girls, cuddle my baby, or cook. The meat and vegetables I threw in the old crockpot were mush when I got home in the evening. I ate on the run rushing to college, I could barely taste it as I drove gulping my food,

One day I read what the children had contributed to the Head Start cookbook. There were all kinds of cute dictations like "First you peel the potatoes, then you boil the meat, and add all the vegetables," etc., etc. My toddler, Jessica's dictation was, "You open up the can and put it in the microwave." That about summed it up.

I was constantly running, rushing, juggling so much every day into the evening. Time continued to rush with no concern for me and everything I had to fit into my day. Before I knew it, a new season and a new semester had begun. One day, I suddenly realized my baby girls had grown and I had missed so much, including some important milestones in their lives. I felt torn as I received my diploma being fully aware of the price I had paid.

I was a mom that faced hardships and did her best in such a dilemma. There were regrets, yet sacrificios had to be made. I am sorry, mis niñas, that you too paid the price.

I did not want your childhood to be as difficult as mine. I had to break the cycle of poverty.

I Love you, and I am very proud of all three of you.

Mom, su Amá,

Maria A. Ramirez

Hijas: Angelica, Tanya, Jessica

Maria Ramirez, Metro State College 1988. Magna Cum Laude.

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