My baby girl graduated from Kindergarten. I know it's just Kindergarten but when I was little my mom always made it a point to celebrate each academic accomplishment we had. I think this was a very special part of my childhood and I plan to do the same for my kids.

I told her to wear a dress. She was like, "Why, Mom?! I don't want a dress. Nobody else is going to wear one".  I told her she had to. This was an important day so she had to dress up. She obliged and when she saw herself in the mirror she loved what she saw. I curled her hair and gave her some lipgloss :-)

The whole time I couldn't help but be reminded me of when we were little and I wanted to fit in. My mom would always tell us we didn't have to be like everyone else. Being different was cool.

Some days living in the community that I do, I feel a little fatigued with reminding my kids it's okay to look and act different from everyone around them. As long as they are not hurting others of course.

It's okay to have a big loud family that speaks Spanish, that like being outside and talking to everyone. That get together just to talk. It's okay to have a mom and a dad that are always at school functions and so proud of their babies. It's okay to wear big princess dresses and dress up to go out!

It's okay that you can smell our barbecues from a street away. Or that every once in a while we will play loud music and dance in our living room just because and NO it's not cause were drunk.

A couple of years ago, we were playing music and teaching my brothers how to dance bachata and salsa in our living room. We heard a loud knock. It was around 6 pm so we were a little surprised, we weren't expecting anyone and it was a little early for noise complaints (we've gotten a few). The man at the door was a very tall white man and in broken Spanish told us he was jogging by and heard our music and laughter and just wanted to say it brought back fond memories of his travels to South America.

My mom was so happy to hear this, she welcomed him in. We were about to have dinner so he was invited to stay (he did). We danced and ate till about 10 pm. Turned the music down and started winding down. He didn't want it to end. Ha ha.

I always remember this day when I feel discouraged by comments, stares and complaints. I know there are those out there who appreciate my cultura and the fact that I refuse to forget where I came from.

But honestly even if there weren't, there isn't much that can keep my dancing feet and happy heart from rejoicing in my family and our background music :-)

I'm so so ecstatic for Natalia's accomplishment, so happy for another occasion to celebrate her beautiful life.

And I'm so grateful we have a huge family that is just as happy to partake in it.

Saludos y Felicidades to all the Spring 2011 graduates!!


Gissellegirard said…
Awww congrats NAti!!!! yeay.

I too agree, every little step should be celebrated!

And I love the story of the jogging man lol, its so cute!!!

I turn the radio up like at 10 am , and dance my little heart away all day lol
Shahnaz Short said…
Aww she is too cute! Love the pink dress. You are a wonderful mother and I hope to remember to celebrate BIG all my kids' accomplishments :)
Di Filizola-Abalos said…
I loved reading this Flor. She looked gorgeous :)

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