Mothers give birth. Good mothers give unconditional love. This is the story of a daughter and two mothers: Margaret, Klainer’s 1950s Irish Catholic mother, and Minga, an impoverished Panamanian woman. Both were mothers. Both loom large in the author’s identity. Only one gave Klainer the kind of open, unreserved love she most longed for.
This is a mother-daughter story moving from the pastel shirtwaist dresses of the 1950’s to Klainer’s crisp blue business suit of the 1980’s, from the early and sudden death of her father to the warm embrace of Minga and her extended family, from rosary beads that glowed in the dark to an interfaith marriage and secular family, from love withheld to love simply offered and accepted.