My mother was born and raised in Mexico, her upbringing wasn’t always rich of several outfits or a variety of foods, but it was always rich of love; love from her grandmother, who raised her along with her older sister. My mother’s mom had left for California leaving them behind so she was almost never in the picture, and she never knew who her father was. The only role model she had growing up was her grandmother and she never once felt like she was missing anything nor did she ever feel abandoned. In the 80s, they were finally able to immigrate to California leaving behind the house and the life they knew. Years went by, then my mom started a family and I came along as well as my two sisters. I was lucky enough to have met my great grandmother and have her be with me during the first five years of my life before she passed of a sudden heart attack in 2000. It hit the whole family really hard; she was my mom’s motherly and fatherly figure growing up, she was also always there for me up until I was five, and she was very much loved by our neighborhood, she was very well known. So the imaged purple blouse holds sentimental value to my mother, the blouse is more than 30 years old and it was given to her by her grandmother on her birthday in ’86. She has kept it for so long because it represents her grandmother’s memory, the love she had for everyone, the sacrifices she had to make to raise a family on her own, and the courage to bring the family to California for a better life.
– Jacquelyn Ochoa