First Love – Tribute to my Mother

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My earliest memory of Valentine’s Day is connected to my mother, Fortunata Valentina, because it’s her birthday. My mother adores children and lavishes love and affection on them.  She would rock us to sleep until we were five or six years old, and give ‘arm pets’ while she sang.  I took it all for granted, partially because I grew up in such a small town and I thought that all women loved babies and young children. It took me many years to understand that isn’t true.  I recall reading that some children receive a love from their mother that is like ‘milk and honey’ and these children are blessed.

Tomorrow my mother will be 87 and I must say that it’s taken me years to deeply understand what it meant to have her love.  Most of my life when I thought of my ‘first love’ I would naturally think of the first man who loved me deeply. Today, instead, I’ve been reflecting on my mother and what she gave to me from my first breath – her sacrifices, and her rewards.

I’m offering a tribute to all mother’s everywhere as they may be the ‘first love’ for most children.



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