My mom is pretty (and) awesome. She’s vulnerable but distant, sweet but fierce, intelligent but airheaded (I guess they’re right when they say the bark doesn’t fall far from the tree).
When I was little, she was the ultimate expression of beauty. To my eyes, she was a princess. She smelled like powdery flowers, her hair was long while mine was always short, she wore lipstick and had awesome high heels. When I was in my teens, I’d steal her shirts and change my clothes in the school bathroom to impress my classmates with my stylish “attitude”.
Today I am a mom and I my relationship with my own mother took a different dimension. She’s a kind grandmother, who loves to cook and knit, who travels and gets carried away shopping for toys. She loves flowers and pets.
Looking back at our history together and with everything I know today, here are some of the most valuable things my mother tought me and I will be teaching my own son:
- Stay in touch. Give her a quick call or send her a message to let her know you’re ok (or not). Instead of bugging your friends (or husband/wife) about your daily drama, share it with the only woman who wants to hear it all.
- Be honest. As a recovering lying addict, my sincerest advice is to just stop it. Mothers have a hidden radar that can detect lies better than the FBI. It’s painful, rude and doesn’t get you anywhere. I used to lie because I was afraid I’d disappoint my parents. It turns out that I was disappointing them even more by hiding things. So why complicate life? Just man up to your own actions!
- Respect yourself. When you’re good to yourself, people around you will see and emulate that. Treat yourself like your best friend (still working on that one).
- Laugh often. Mom loves to dance, laugh and be jolly. She loves drinking beer, eating well and having a good time. She loves going out for coffee and window shopping. She also gets a kick out of soap operas and cheesy TV shows. Whatever makes you laugh and puts you in a good mood, just make it happen as often as possible.
- Have faith. Going to church with her is the most profound connection we ever created. Praying for her is my way of showing compassion and care towards her. But you don’t necessarily need to be religious to connect on a spiritual level. Just being present and appreciative of her is enough.
Author Mitch Albom says it best: “Behind all your stories is always your mother’s story, because hers is where yours begins.”