Writing highlights mom’s journey

By Helena Rodriguez: CNJ Columnist

My pen runneth dry.

This is the part of the movie where we each go our separate ways and the little blurry words, too small to read, come down the screen, along with notes of thanks to people too numerous to name while my many bloopers roll in the upper part of the screen. I’ve had more than a few of those.

I’ve occupied a spot on this editorial page for almost five years now — opening my life, my heart, and often, against her will, making my 17-year-old daughter Laura’s life an open book as well. But I’ve almost run out of things to say. It’s time to move on to a new chapter in life, and hopefully, a new career in whatever and wherever the Lord will lead me.

This week, Laura officially finished her last day of public education. A week from today, she will walk across a stage to receive her high school diploma. But not before she and my niece Crystal — often mistaken for her twin sister — live two fairytale nights as they take part in the 79th annual winding of the Maypole at Portales High School on Monday and Tuesday nights.

Laura will be dressed like a princess, wearing a stunning pink, pearl-studded, full-hooped Gone-With-the-Wind-like gown. My eyes are already moistening with tears.

Laura will then begin her next phase of education, moving on to the realm of higher education as she begins her college career, taking classes maybe as soon as June to get a head start. Laura has decided to stay at home and go to Eastern New Mexico University, which I think is a wise decision.

Since 2000, I’ve shared my experiences of being a single mom raising a teenager and going back to school myself in the middle of a journalism career that has spanned 18 1/2 years. Laura was 10 when I began writing my first column for the Abilene Reporter-News in Abilene, Texas, from 2000 to 2002.