Posted: Monday, September 27, 2010 4:39:08 AM
“My Hero is My Grandmother”
A widow, the mother of twelve, grandmother of twenty six and the great grandmother of twenty seven. The one we all call “Inang”. The strongest most inspirational woman I know, my grandma, my hero, Juana C. Oligo.
One of the many stories my grandmother has told me growing up was when she had to leave the Philippines. Departing the motherland twenty nine years ago to come to America with my mother was a difficult decision she had to make. Although she did not want to, she knew she had to. Parting from all her friends and family wasn’t very easy, yet thinking about the better lifestyle she would be putting up for herself and for them gave her the intestinal fortitude to put forth the sacrifice. Hearing this made me realize how much courage she had, always thinking of others before herself. Even though she is growing old, she continues providing for her family. Not only us here but for the ones she left behind. Her generosity inspires me. She knows she does not have to do things for us but she chooses to because its what makes her happy. From gardening to cooking, laundry and dishes. She might be tired but she still has the energy to make us laugh, putting smiles on our faces with her singing, dancing and jokes. Her motivation and encouragement baffles me.
From all the people I’ve met, all the people I know; friends, family, etc. My inang is by far the strongest person I know. She has faced many trials and has fallen but she learns from her mistakes and it just makes her that much stronger. My grandma has crossed many obstacles in her lifetime. From witnessing the deaths of many loved ones, overload of stress and now Alzheimer’s, she always has a smile on her face, showing us everything is fine so there’s no need for us to worry. When my grandmother is sick is when she is her strongest, her spirit is that much stronger, she doesn’t let it get the best of her, which helps us cope. My inang continues to remind us how important we are to her and how happy she is. Everyday is a learning experience for us. Even though she’s not aware of it, she builds our spirits day by day, making us just as strong as her.
A heroic life isn’t the longest life, it isn’t the wealthiest life, but a heroic life is one that has made a heroic difference in someone’s life. That is exactly what my grandmother is to me, my hero. She has been inspiring me for the past seventeen years and will continue to for a very long time.