In a nutshell, I am: a teacher, a mommy, a stay-at-home mom, a wife, a first generation Nicaraguan-American with Danish roots, in a mixed-faith/race marriage, bilingual, raising Indian-Nicaraguan-American children who will know and respect their own cultural and lingual backgrounds as well as those of others, trying to make the world a better place by being the best teacher and mom I can be because our children are our future.
Maestra/teacher: I tell anyone who wants to know about my professional calling (I assume if you’re reading this, that means you), that it all started when I was just under 3 years old and my parents gave me a little sister. Yes, she would be a playmate and a life-long friend, but my parents also made it clear that I had a duty to help take care of her. Over the years, this transformed from helping my mom with diaper changes to playing escuelita to ensure she learned Spanish by reading aloud our Libritos de Oro then quizzing her with vocab and comprehension questions (and even giving her homework, poor sis) to being a guide, a mentor, and a role model. There’s a strong family lineage too. It was just my calling, loud and clear.
I respect any readers asking themselves, “why does this chick think she can tell me anything about education?” So, here’s a quick summary of my educational/professional background:
With over a decade in Early Childhood Education, my teaching experience spans ages 3-21 in public school settings, (but mostly focused on Pre-K/K), urban education, bilingual education, special education (self-contained, inclusive, and in-home/community and parent training), Autism Intervention, a public charter school, coaching and supervising teachers, supporting and empowering parents, and educational consulting. Now, I’m a full-time mommy to three monstruitos.
Mommy/momma: my favorite name and role. The child who first spoke those words is Aman, the smartest and funniest 2-year-old boy I’ve known (I know, we all say that…and we all mean it.) And now Ishabella, my sweet Izzie, has started saying it, and I know her twin brother Rohan will soon, but he’s currently focused on being the fastest crawler and charming the world with his sweet smile. Those are my babies, and I’m so grateful for every fun, exhausting, amusing, emotional roller coaster of a day with them. Yes, I have three kiddos under the age of 3. And I still have my sanity! Although, my Aman often says that I have “too many kiddos” and that “mommy is crazy.” I said he was smart and funny, right?
*Tía/Aunt & Daughter: Before I was a mommy or teacher, my favorite role, the one I felt was most special, was that of Tía and Madrina (godmother) to my oldest nephew. For 16 years, I’ve observed and admired my three sisters assuming the role of motherhood. Each so differently, but undeniably with their hearts and lives committed to being great mommas. Without them and our wonderful, devoted, loca, Nicaragüense momma, I wouldn’t be the mom I am.