As the mother of two young adult sons, I sometimes wonder what lessons I have imparted upon them as a mother that they will take with them throughout their lives.
For Mothers Day, I thought I would contemplate the life lessons I learned from my mom.
You Can Never, Ever, Over-Love Anyone:
Did you know that I am very special? I am my mother’s miracle menopause baby. I am a little angel sent from heaven just for my mom. I am the prettiest, smartest, most artistic little girl in whatever club, neighborhood, or school that I am involved in!
You think I would have a pretty big head after hearing these words throughout my childhood. I did have my precocious moments, but all in all, what I did end up with was a very strong sense of self. A belief that I am good enough to take on any endeavor I choose.
Criticism Will Get You Nowhere:
Sometimes the best lessons we learn from our parents are what NOT to do. There were many reasons why my parent’s miserable marriage failed (even at eleven-years-old, I was relieved). One of them was mom’s quick, clever, and cutting criticism of my father.
I will admit, I have heard her voice come out of my mouth aimed at my own darling husband. Some of these lessons are so ingrained, they are hard patterns to break. I work on it daily and am getting better at self-management.
It is true when they say that what we loathe in others is usually something we loathe within ourselves. I can’t take criticism at all from my dear husband.
The Will to Live, The Will to Die:
They came to get her in an ambulance when I was five. She was given twenty-four hours to live; both of her kidneys had failed. She spent the next sixteen years going through one torturous medical ordeal after the other.
Through pain, heartbreak, and financial struggle she raised me into a young woman. She was determined to see me grow up. I was her purpose for living.
On my wedding day she told me “my job is done and I know you are going to be OK, it is time for me to die.”
She peacefully died in her sleep six weeks later. I always maintain that she would have lived longer had I been marrying the wrong man. She knew I was in very good hands.
Thank you Mommy:
Even though you only had twenty-two years to be my mother, you made the most of them.
Thank you for teaching me to adore my children, to care about how I treat my husband and above all else never to give up on what I want in life.
I challenge all of you out there to call or write to your mom, even if she is gone. Tell her what you learned from her and how thankful you are for those lessons.
One of the biggest acts of forgiveness is to find gratitude in the difficult and challenging things about those we love. It’s also the best way to begin to let go of the past and create a more joyful future.