“They got divorced when I was really young and my dad never paid for child support. We had very little money, my mom worked two jobs and did everything she could to make sure we were never on the streets. But she didn’t have enough to feed us so she would basically starve herself for months so that me and my sister could always eat. She almost had to go the hospital multiple times.
I remember one day, when I was 9’ish, we were driving to the bank and she just starts crying in the car. I asked why she was sad and she held up a bag of coins and said “I’m sad because this is all the money that we have to go on”. That’s when I started being like “Wow, I have to do everything I can or else we’re gonna be homeless”. If I found coins I would hide them in a little box, or if she wanted to take us shopping or do something nice for us, I was always like “we don’t need these things, it’s fine.”
But she was the most giving, generous, kind person I saw growing up. She was always willing to give to somebody else something before she would take something for herself. She’s probably done a million things for people that she’ll never tell anybody about. I really admire that kind of selflessness in a person. And I think that has given me inspiration to try and live in a way that is also kind and generous to people around me.
Now things are good in my life. I work freelance as a graphic designer and I can live wherever I want. This is the first time that I’ve been able to actualize that dream. So it’s kind of surreal! But I worked my ass off to make it happen. And I feel proud of myself for that. But I also want to make a lot of money so I can send my mom on nice vacations, buy her a nice house to retire in, etc. She gave me so much and I want to make it worth her time. She never left the USA, and I don’t know why but she’s obsessed with Geneva. So one day I’ll really like to bring her over here and I know she’ll probably just be crying all the time saying “It’s sooo beautiful!” (laughs).”
(Pont de la Coulouvrenière | original English)