Honoring My Most Important Essential Worker

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Our country couldn’t have made it through this lethal marathon of 2020 without all the essential workers who helped the world run — from delivery drivers to first responders to grocery-store workers to gas-station attendants. They all left the safety of their homes to go to work, knowing they were risking their lives each time they stepped outside. Most of them did so for minimum wage, just trying to make enough money to pay their bills.

One of those frontline workers is my mom. My mother works two essential jobs: one at a pharmacy and one at a hardware store. Working these two customer-facing positions during a pandemic, when she’s in a high-risk category health-wise, has taken a toll on her, but she rarely complains. If you were to walk into one of her stores, she’d still greet you with kindness and a smile, whether she just started her shift or is at the end of a 14-hour day. That’s just the type of person she is.

My Mom the Hero

In addition to working so many hours every week, she takes care of her elderly mother, who moved in right before the pandemic hit, and still manages to find time to have socially distanced visits with all of her grandkids. She also calls me every day on her breaks or when she’s on her way home from work. She's always cheerful — even when I’ve had a long day and I'm grumpy and probably not as talkative as she’d like me to be.

So to her, and to all the other essential workers (including my husband), I want to say thank you. And since I know she’s reading this because she has always been my biggest fan, I will end this by saying: I love you, Mom.

Tags: Navigating the Pandemic, Overcoming Adversity, Family

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Written By

Alicia Peiffer

Alicia lives in the Chicago suburbs where she is raising two preteens and a toddler with her husband. She works from home... See Full Bio

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