Happy Birthday Mama!


My mama was born about 1926. However she has remained at 33 years of age since she reached it. As of this writing she is healthy and able to do whatever she wants on her birthday.

I called her about noon and sang her a happy birthday song. She did not answer right away. Perhaps she heard and wanted a copy on her answering machine. For just as I was about to wish her many more she said “Hello”.

At first I was going to write about endpoints. Mostly because in doing the genealogy of our family, all I am seeing is when someone was born and then when they had died. Even for the living it is disconcerting seeing that Death Date staring all of us in the face. Someday, somewhere someone will fill in mine. Maybe an ancestor (not direct descendant for I have none) will come across my endpoints and wonder what happened in my life.

This is why I am helping mama with her memoirs. We are recording what she remembers about her life and attempting to make a book. Some of that spills into here because I am also helping her with my research into our genealogy and then there is the work I am doing on my People dB.

She was born in Urga, Mongolia and they named her Nadia. Much later she met my Papa Ivan in Shanghai and a bit later still, I was born in the Philippines. Our journey continued to the United States and eventually we settled in San Francisco.

She often told us that if she could give us the moon she would. It was her response whenever we begged for some toy we wanted. I was too young then to appreciate that she had already given us the most precious gift of all.

For the wonderful woman who gave me birth, Happy Birthday Mama!