When I lived in DR, there was this kid, Jochi, that was always around. He rarely wore a shirt and he never wore shoes. He loved cursing people out and he wasn’t the most well mannered. Parents didn’t want their kids around him, and the kids would scoff at him. He and his older brothers helped my mom in her store and so I saw more of him. I knew he was a little out there, but I liked him. My cousin and I would play fight with him and it’d be fun when we would actually win. Except that most of the time he would moon us.
At one point my mom asked him to move in. He could live with us and go to school and all that. The deal was that he would stop fooling around and actually wear a whole outfit, shirt, shoes, underwear and all. I guess there also was some sort of curfew. Eventually, he couldn’t do it. I mean, he had grown up in a total different environment. My mom’s expectations didn’t quite make sense to him and so he went back to his place.
Twelve years ago we moved to NYC. I haven’t seen Jochi in a very long time. But about a year ago he added me on Facebook. He has commented on almost every picture that I have of my mom. He sends me all these messages telling me to let her know that he says hi, that he wants to see her someday, and that he loves her very much. He has repeatedly said how grateful he is for the way my mom was there for him.
A lot of the time my mom drives me crazy. She’s controlling, and I need to be left alone a lot of the time. But damn, there is no doubt to me that she is the most loving person I know. The woman radiates so much warmth and love. And for her to have positively impacted someone that way, it makes me really proud of her. I hope they get to meet again.
I’m just inspired by the ways people connect and how they take care of each other.