Theirs was a disciplined life with Ulyssese looking after his little brother after school, making sure homework was completed and other chores taken care of while mom was still at work. They knew they were not allowed to have friends visit when she was not at home, and they were also mindful that until all their school work was done, extra-curricular activities should not take place.
Even then at a young age, the boys were focused, and this persisted into adulthood. Ulyssese said, “My brother and I, we don’t hang out, or drop in to a friend’s house just to have fun and chill. We don’t have time to do that because for us, that is time wasted, every minute counts.” Giuliano, at 26, is full of wisdom. He said: “I think a lot has changed since social media came around. Growing up in the early 2000s there wasn’t social media, but the generation that I see now, they go to school, then rush home to social media, and their minds are all online now. And the sad thing is, anything they see on social media, they try to imitate. Back then, kids were not cursing and saying bad words. But now, if you look at the new version of this generation, these kids are screaming all kinds of bad words and stuff like that. So, it’s like the strictness that guided the younger generation has changed – a lot.”
With a matriarch of great caliber at the helm, and being taught from a tender age that it is fine to have big dreams because anything is possible, this family is now living that dream. So, what’s next for them? The response – continued meetings at the family dinner table to plan strategy, the pursuit of other dreams yet to be realized and providing Sint Eustatius’ residents with the tools to embrace sustainable, healthy lifestyles.
A sum of the manifestation of a mother’s vison for her sons.