Today is Mother’s Day, a very important day in the year, and one that is typically looked over. But, I feel (in the past couple years) Mother’s Day is more about being thankful for your mother rather than showering her with chocolates and roses. Don’t get me wrong, that is important, too, but I just have memories of my mom asking us for peace, quiet, love with no fighting, and a clean house for Mother’s Day.
I want to honor my mother, as well as my mother-in-law today with something very special. Justin and I have both decided to write letters to our moms expressing our love and appreciation of them. But, to make it more apparent and special, I thought I’d use it as the first post on our new, redesigned blog for the world to see just how awesome our mothers are! (Also, in honor of mothers, and the new design of the blog, I will be doing my first-ever giveaway at the bottom of the post.)
This is actually the second draft to your letter. I spent about an hour working over the right, strong, emotive words to use. Then, technology being technology, it was lost in the blink of an eye. I will admit, I cried. I really want this day to be special for you.
Mom, I hope you know how much I truly love you and admire you. You are my hero. You’ve always been there for me. You’ve always been proud of me. Everything I’ve done in life was for that extent–to make you proud (although I did enjoy about 95% of what I did and did it for me as well). This idea really started to become obvious in 9th grade. Remember I had joined that advanced placement program for my core classes and AP European History was kicking my butt. The first term progress report I brought home had an ugly D+ on it. I was so scared to show it to you since I had always been an A-B student. You looked at it, smiled, and said, “It’s ok that you didn’t get the grade you wanted. I’m not mad, sad, or disappointed. Grades aren’t everything. Let’s just make sure to ask the teacher what we can do for help.” That was it. You were still proud of me.
I have watched you my entire life. Seen how you cleaned and kept the house, how you cooked and made sure Dad and the kids always had lunches to take with them. I did hate Saturday chores, and there were plenty of times I believed I did a good-enough job and you made me redo it. But, when I came to college, and seeing all the other girls gasp and wonder that they had to windex windows and dust off their desk and vacuum their floors, and they had absolutely no idea how to do so, I was in awe. How could their mothers not teach them? How could they have absolutely no idea how to do the even simplest chore? And these were girls who talked about getting married freshman year to a dreamy RM and being the perfect housewife. I scoffed. They couldn’t cook, clean, or do laundry. I knew how to do all that because you taught me. You’d be more than willing to put done what you had going to pull out a recipe for me to experiment with cooking. And, there’d be countless times you’d spend hours double-checking my grammar for me even though I was a big grown-up college girl. You spent hours trying to make my wedding truly perfect, and guess what, it was better than perfect.
You’ve prepared me well for life. You’ve stayed strong in the church. I loved watching you interact with the primary kids and the young women. How you’ve always supported Dad in all his callings, marathons, silly geo-caching obsessions, and his job, and now his “retirement” and second job. The way you treat him, and the way that you give advice to me and my siblings, how you’d do anything for us, like make curtains and pillows for my apartment, be willing to pay the train fare for me to come visit, is very appreciated. I can learn from your example. Your whole life, you’ve always been more than willing to put others first and serve. I love this about you. You truly care about those around you–your family and friends.
I know you’ve had a past couple of years with family, health, relations, moving, retiring, money, helping to plan my wedding, emotions, etc. But, I love that we can do things together, like read books such as The Help, Shanghai Girls, and now The Happiness Project. I love being your confidant, being able to have grown-up conversations with you. I feel that as I’ve matured, and taken the different steps into adulthood, our relationship and grown and deepened. I am so thankful to know that you’ve always been there for me and have always been proud of me. I’m excited to know that will continue as I age.
I love you, Mom, and that will never change.
A rather unconventional Happy Mother’s Day wish from me, I know. I honestly don’t even know where to begin with how grateful I am for you. So many things that I do or am aware of now I can attribute to you. You always wanted life to challenge me, and it really didn’t matter how I found the challenge, as long as it got me thinking. It wasn’t until I was on my own for a while before I realized how much of a hand you had in my life. It wasn’t just because you weren’t there to tell me what to do, or to make my lunch for school or anything like that. What really impressed me was how many things I did on my own, and when I was questioned why I did them, my response was “My Mom told me to do it this way”. And honestly, that was all I needed.
Growing up, Dad made certain I was respecting you and treating you the best. Hopefully, I did a good enough job, after all, I know how lazy I get sometimes… I remember the fiasco my last year of volleyball, and I was ashamed at how some of my teammates treated their mothers. You deserve to be treated with not only the utmost respect, but also treated with the best of care. I spent a good portion of high school worried about your health. I needed you then, and I still need you now.
I’ve never really been good with words, and our family never has been very sappy either, but know how much I appreciate you. I love you so much,
Mother’s Day Giveaway
As a Mother’s Day gift from me to you (or a special mother in your life), I am doing my first-ever giveaway. One lucky winner will receive a Liz Claiborne brown leather satchel.