13. Shmi Skywalker
Image Credit: Lucasfilm
Imagine you just found out you are pregnant. And you know there is no way on earth you should be pregnant. There is no one in your life who could have helped you conceive a child. How do you cope?
If you’re Shmi Skywalker, you cope with grace and dignity. And you love your child like she did. Perhaps no woman loved her child with more unselfish affection than Shmi. Consider how hard her life was. She was a slave and she had to watch her son become a slave, as well. Then, even though it meant she would be alone, she encouraged her son to take his freedom. She did not even weep watching Anakin leave her. She knew he was on his way to a better life than she, still a slave, could give him.
Later, a miraculous turn of events brought Shmi happiness. The man who eventually purchased her, Cliegg Lars, fell in love with her and freed her. They married and built a life together with Cliegg’s son Owen. But Shmi’s new life didn’t last. She was captured by Tusken Raiders and tortured. It’s some comfort that she got to see Anakin one last time before she passed away. But then she died in his arms.
Shmi’s strength is beyond comprehension. She projects zero bitterness at the hard life she lives or the people in it. She never sheds a tear on-screen. The ultimate single mother, she raises her inexplicable son with wisdom, gentle scolding, and kind encouragement. At the end of the day, though, she is tough as nails. That’s why we love her.