"Biology is the least of what makes someone a mother." This bold statement by Oprah Winfrey has stuck with me for years. It is in fact, true. A kind woman by the name of Judith Tavares gave me a second chance in December of 1992. She traveled to the middle of the Atlantic Ocean to adopt me from the island of St. Michael in the Azores.(Belonging to Portugal.) My mother never had a full education because the women in Portugal after a certain grade were sent home to learn how to be a house wife, so when she immigrated here she went straight to working in factories in Fall River, MA as well as house cleaning in various parts of Rhode Island. She turns 70 this July and til this day, is a hard working, caring and compassionate woman that I could only wish to be a fraction of what she is when I reach her age. She is an active member at our church of St. John of God where she is part of the Holy Ghost Society and she loves her Jesus that's for sure. My mother is the oldest of 9 siblings and is daily turning into our family matriarch. She is truly my hero for giving me such a great opportunity to live in this country, giving me a home to live in and a family to keep and love forever. She has taught me to always 'use my brains' and always reminds me that the best thing she's ever given me is an education that she never had. My mother is my super hero. She picks my head up in the darkest of times and gives me her shoulder to cry my tears during the stressful moments of my life on. She's God's greatest gift to me. Twenty-three years later and I still realize daily that I don't know where I would be without her. I am very lucky to be adopted as her daughter she has made an impact in my life for the better by showing the dedication to the obligations that come with being a mother. For someone who doesn't speak very well English, she has created many friendships and bonds everywhere she goes, always sharing her wisdom from stories of when she was a teenager. She has been married to her husband Paulo for a glistening 48 years and shows unconditional love every day and sets a tremendously amazing example for me to do the same.
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