Today my ʻohana celebrates the life and Heavenly Birthday of my grandmother Mona Haʻahaʻa (Kaʻapana) Medeiros.
My grandmother was my source for inspiration growing up. Born and raised on Molokai, Grandma Mona spent her early days down east end in Ualapuʻe, where part of my family lives to this day. When she married my grandfather, they moved to a home in Liliha, Oʻahu. Grandma raised all five of us grandkids in her house in Panui St. and there she taught us some of the lessons she was taught as a kid. Things like being pono in your actions and what you say. Laulima, to always work hard and help others. And like her name to always be haʻahaʻa, to live a life of humility and grace.
As I grew older, I learned to appreciate the important role that Grandma played as the matriarch of our family. She was the glue that kept the family together. From parties to graduations to check-in phone calls to catch up, Grandma knew the importance of building and maintaining relationships and showing love by being there for one another.
Her influence on me as a kanaka continues to this day. Even though she has passed in 2018, we celebrate her life and continue her legacy by raising our keiki to be strong, intelligent and compassionate Native Hawaiians.
Hauʻoli Lā Hānau e Grandma Mona.