Some lessons were practical, some were necessary, some were life changing, some happened when I was little, and some happened today. But all of them were a gift from my mother.
My mom taught me:
- how to make a bed. Perfectly.
- how to change a diaper. I had so much practice with my younger siblings, it was old hat by the time I had kids!
- how to wrap and hold and bathe and dress and rock and feed a baby.
- how to fold t-shirts. And towels. And men's underwear. (Why? Seriously...)
- how to vacuum, dust, shake rugs, clean bathrooms, wash windows, sweep, polish silver, and do dishes. K.P. every night!
- that "By the inch, life's a cinch. By the yard, life is hard."
- that it's hard not to lose your identity when you're a mother of young kids. But it comes back.
- that asking for help can be difficult, particularly for someone like me who likes to do it all on my own. "Do it anyway, Sweetheart. Everyone needs help from time to time. It's not a sign of weakness. It's a sign of intelligence. Besides, that's what I'm here for."
- that being a really competitive athlete AND a "sexy woman" were not mutually exclusive. ;)
- how to laugh at yourself. To really belt out a chuckle when you do something "silly." It's healthy. And contagious.
- to find time for yourself, however brief, every day.
- how to hug. How to really give someone a hug that says, "You are all that matters in this moment. Can you feel it?"
- right from wrong. And that sometimes it's not that simple.
- how to protect the underdog.
- that when you lose someone close to you, your Mom is there to hold you together.
- that when you are worried about your newborn, or your toddler, or your grade schooler, or your teenager, your Mom is there to talk you through it.
- when someone makes you feel like a million bucks, your mom is there to listen to the story. And to be sincerely happy for you.
- that family is everything.
- that there's nothing more challenging and simultaneously rewarding than being a Mommy, a Mom, a Ma, a Momma, a Mother.
- how to love. Unconditionally. I think she wrote the book.
- that it's important to pass it all on.
- ...and so much more.
I love you, Mom!
I look forward to spending time with you this summer!