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My mother was perfect; full of love and humility. Yes, she was. She endured my growing up years from a smart-mouthed child to a know-it-all teenager, then a young wife and mother who thanked God she had not sold me long ago to anyone crazy enough to take me.

No, she stayed the course, and I miss her so. My mother introduced me to reading, although, I could not read, not as others read. I am dyslexic; every word I see on a page is scrambled, certainly not what the author wrote.

So I would ask her to read to me, and she did. We traveled so far; oceans away from reality without ever leaving our home. She also helped me to understand at an early age that I could go, do, accomplish anything I desired or thought I might want to explore.

We started out as mother and daughter but quickly became best friends. Her intelligence and insight opened the door for her to treat me as an individual, allowing me space to either stand or fall, to succeed or fail; always there to pick me up, dust me off, and send me on my way again.

I knew, even as a sassy child, or later, an independent wanderer, that no matter how long I lived, I would never be as complete as my mother, but I keep trying. As I said, she was perfect.

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