ReInvention Philly One Year Ago
Nonna’s Gift to me, Italians Definitely do it better, my reinvention story
“It has been a year and I thought I’d like to share my reinvention story with my fellow tribers. “Madonna On Tour” – I was nearly pissing myself with excitement with the news, and it was rumored to be a greatest hits tour at that! I was so broke it wasn’t even funny, but not because I’d spent my Madonna on the Madonna catalog. She contributed to the depletion of my bank account, but going through college isn’t always easy on your pocket-book.
So I did the only thing a rational college student would do, I begged my Mom! “Mom, please lend me money so I can see Madonna, you know how much I love her!” “That butana!” she said. For those of you who have been spared from the rigors of intelligence, that Italian for slut. One of the great things about living in an all Italian household, was that you can use Italian in many more colorful ways than those who actually learn it to travel.
All is this is happening in front of my grandmother, or Nonna, as I call her. She calls me Nonna too. For Italians, it’s a sign of affection to call your grandson or granddaughter, Nonna or Nonno as the case may be. We have a very close bond. I lived next door to her all my life, and she certainly made my dream come true when she said: “I’ll give you money for the tickets, anything to make you happy”.
I was overjoyed. My grandmother admires Madonna because she’s a strong Italian woman just like her. My Nonna came from Italy after living through the war and ran her own business in the states where she still works today at 75. She saw that Madonna was once a “butana”, but she could distinguish between Madonna the businesswoman and madonna the person, the mother, and the artist. She saw how much care and concern she took in parenting Lourdes and Rocco and disciplining them in a way that she new would make them responsible adults when they were older.
Many people talk about Madonna being an Icon in the music industry, but I don’t think Madonna wants us to remember her most for that reason. Madonna is an incredible mother, and she cares deeply about her spirituality and spreading the good news about the freedom that comes when you get rid of the negativity in your life. And, I pray that we can all see the strength of people that come into our lives like Madonna and my grandmother who can serve as a true role models of what it means to give back to our loved ones selflessly and without measure.
When I came back from what was one of the most amazing experiences of my life, I told my grandmother that she wore a shirt that said “Italians Do it Better,” and I could tell by the smile on her face that she knew it was all worth it.