Born in Szubin, Poland |
Marta has fond memories of her childhood in Poland. But with a suffering economy and businesses closing, “life in Poland was far from great”. She remembers standing in line for hours, taking shifts with her father, just to get a bag of sugar. Seeking a better life for their children, her family left in search of new opportunities in Germany. But even with master’s degrees, Marta’s parents had to work odd jobs to make ends meet. Three years later, her family moved to Canada after being sponsored by a distant cousin. After arriving the family had to ‘start fresh’ taking any job to survive. She says her parents persevered and now they are “successfully working in their respective fields”. They created a beautiful home in Mississauga for her and her brother, and gave them every opportunity possible. One such opportunity was for Marta to graduate with two university degrees debt free, and being able to purchase her first home in Toronto six years ago. She now resides there with her husband, two year old son, and little dog named Macki. She feels like she grew up always moving around. Finally, buying this house in her mid-twenties felt like it was “home”, and this feeling became even stronger with the birth of her son.
Toronto as Home
Marta has a feeling of ease walking by this mural and the surrounding garden. Contemplating its beauty puts a smile on her face when she needs it. As Marta’s son, Alexander, was born in the hospital down the road, he had to stay in the NICU for five days. During those long and tiring initial days as a new mom, she spent a lot of her time sitting and looking out onto the beautiful lake and the near-by Roncesvalles community. She shared some of her first special moments with Alexander just relaxing and enjoying the views.
Connection with the Past
Marta is holding a picture of her parents, which was taken during their three-year courtship while in university. It is a photo that represents a time when her parents were carefree; a time when they only needed to think of themselves. This photo has a special meaning to her because her parents sacrificed their own happiness, their friends and their life, in Poland in order to pursue better opportunities for their children. “I know it will never be the same,” she says, “but, after 22 years, Canada has become their new home, and their new happiness.” She says she can’t thank her parents enough, as they have “laid the wonderful path that [she has] walked in life.”