My Mother’s Daughter

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“Shayna and Dominique, you can come see her now”.

The nurse’s grey scrubs complemented the calming atmosphere of the waiting room. My mom had just finished her surgery. My sister and I were finally allowed to see her after two hours of eating salty Rold Gold pretzels while we patiently waited. After months of contemplation, my mom had finally gotten her fibroids removed. Medically known as uterine myomas, fibroids are noncancerous tumors that develop in the uterus, mainly affecting African American and Latina women. It causes great pain to its bearer, a pain which my mom had to eradicate. It was a minor surgery, but it was her first time under the knife, so for us, it was a big deal.

I walked into the recovery room fully prepared for what I was about to see, but I was not ready for the wave of emotions that were to follow. She was heavily sedated and only somewhat responsive. My mom, the one person that I could run to in any situation, was in a state of vulnerability. It was at this moment that I realized that she looked so much like my grandmother.

On April 23rd of this year my grandmother, at 86, suddenly took her last breaths. In the wake of her passing, a recollection of her last few years on Earth came to light. In 2011,...

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