In my entire life, what I am most proud of is having had the courage to leave my work to take care of my parents. I’m also proud to say that I’m a breast cancer survivor. I fought cancer alone. I went to the operation alone. I went to receive chemotherapy and radiotherapy alone; you know? It was one of the biggest challenges of my life.
What was the sentence I kept telling myself at that time? It was “come on, Felisa”. Come on, Felisa. If you’re not here, your mother, even though she had a family, your mother isn’t going to be in good care. I was terribly afraid of that. I was afraid to lost my struggle against cancer, you know? That was my worry, to leave my mother alone.
And I was truly depressed. I spent two or maybe three months seated in the sofa looking at her photos and watching videos where she appeared. I have so many videos of her. But I reached a point in which I said to myself “hey, wake up and get out of the sofa. If anything happened to you, what about your pets? I’m not speaking about your own family anymore. I’m talking about the pets”. I have two beautiful pets, a cat and a parrot, and I was worried about who would take care of them.
The happiest day of my life was when my mother gave birth to me. That was, for sure, the happiest moment of my life. I really appreciate to have been brought up by her and to have lived with her, you know? I dedicated all my time to her because she was my everything. Don’t get me wrong, I loved my father too. But my mother was special to me. She fought and worked and gave her children a good education in life. We even had a house thanks to her. My father agreed with the idea but it was my mother who saved money and managed to get the materials to build our house. She worked hard in that house, you know?
That’s the reason why I feel similar to my mother. She was brave and I’m too, it’s the truth. She was kind and I think I’m too. The only difference between my mother and me was the voice. She was a great singer. Even when she was ninety-two years old, she kept on singing.
You have to live. You have to fight for life. Because if you don’t, you’ll sink into a depression, right? I remember when I was in the middle of a depression. My doctor asked me if I wanted medication. “Do you want antidepressants?” she asked and I said “no, absolutely not”. I got to carry on even though It was painful. I got to carry on. I step outside of my comfort zone and expressed how grateful I was for my life. So, my advice is, if you’re having a hard time, you first have to stop and take a breath, right? You have to accept and embrace grief, right? And then you have to take the bull by the horns and live. Because the most important thing in life is living. There’s time for everything. But you have to be happy. You have to wear a smile in your face. You can play a joke when it’s time to play a joke. But the most important thing in life is living. If you don’t live your life, you have done nothing.