I’m the first person who’d admit being a mom is hard work.
I see my girlfriends juggle careers and school and marriages — and then raise a bunch of kids. I honestly don’t know how they do it. I have a hard enough time managing two part-time jobs and two dogs.
But being a mom is one of the easier tasks my dear friend, Racie Botelho (above), has to deal with every day.
I’ve known her since I was a kid. Our grandmas were friends and we both attended the same summer fun at First Chinese Church of Christ in Makiki near McKinley High School. I literally spent most of my childhood and teen years with her and her cousin, Kathleen Hood. Some of my fondest memories growing up include them.
But Racie’s had a tough go at life.
She had difficulties getting pregnant. And when she finally did — after years of trying and two rounds of in vitro — she suffered a debilitating stroke two weeks after their twins were born. She spent the next few months in the hospital and in rehab, and she’s never fully recovered.
And to add insult to injury, her husband — the one with the full-time job with benefits — was diagnosed with the rare neuroendocrine carcinoma cancer and died in February, leaving her to raise her twin boys on her own.
I’ve seen her going through the most difficult life situations and never once heard her complain. She gets up every day and gets it done. She works, she takes care of her boys, she manages.
Sometimes when I feel defeated about something going on in my life — like a stressful week of deadlines or a series of car problems — I think about Racie and how she can’t do a lot of the things I can. And she’s lost her husband. And she has to worry about money. And she has two kids to raise.
My life looks very uncomplicated.
So that’s why I wrote that story in today’s Honolulu Star-Advertiser for Mother’s Day. (You can’t access the entire story online unless you pay.) I felt she deserved the recognition. And her boys, only 5, can one day read about their amazing mom and dad.
If you get a chance, read it. You will be inspired, too.
A big shout-out to all the mothers out there, whether you have human kids or furry ones like me! Thanks for all you do!