PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

Opinion

May 12, 2013

A Mother’s Day free from bondage

PORT ARTHUR — Today, when love for our mothers is celebrated, my thoughts are on the three young women who recently escaped the hell they have lived in the last 10 years.

The capture and subsequent escape of Amanda Berry, Georgina DeJesus and Michelle Knight, who all lived on the same Cleveland street and were abducted as teens and imprisoned by a deranged maniac, has preyed on my mind.

No one can deny what the girls, who are now young women, went through during a decade of captivity and torture.

Yet today, there is now cause for celebration.

On so many levels I can see the love of a mother in this stirring story, but perhaps none more greatly demonstrated than by Ms. Berry. The young mother’s fearless actions resulted in a daring escape, not only for herself, but the two other female captives, and her own 6-year-old daughter born of captivity.

As a mother myself, I imagine it was the love Ms. Berry had for her daughter that gave her courage and helped her keep her wits through the long harrowing experience.

I imagine the love she felt — like that of a fierce lioness — how it emboldened her to seize one of the few opportunities for escape that had come the women’s  way in their 10 long years of captivity.

When newscasters announced the six-year-old was indeed Ms. Berry’s child, I imagined how the young mother vowed each and every day, how she promised if only in her mind, that she would find a way to get free of her captor, and to get her baby out of there.

Now, I imagine how that young mother will miss her own mother, who died  in 2006 before knowing she would eventually be free.

Ms. Berry is faced with the task of shielding her daughter from the ugliness of her parentage, of making her child feel loved, and accepted in a world outside the four walls she spent her first six years.

The task will be arduous, and I am sure Ms. Berry will draw on the strength of her own mother, who never stopped looking for her, and never gave up, until death.

As a mother and grandmother I can imagine how all of the young’s women’s  mother’s heart’s were broken to imagine what their daughters endured -- yet they never lost hope.

Today, on this Mother’s Day, I will not expect the usual flowers, a card, or a meal. It will be more than enough to just gaze at my children and thank God for their presence. I will remember the mothers in Cleveland, and know that for them, this will be the happiest Mother’s Day ever.

I wish them all the best, and pray their upcoming days will become filled with normalcy and happiness.

skoonce@panews.com

 

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