A few days ago, I saw this Huffington Post article about one woman’s role as a daughter now that she’s in her twenties and it got me thinking about my relationship with own my mom.
We’ve sure had our differences throughout the years- There was my sophomore year of high school when she wanted me to “get out more,” and my junior year of high school when she wanted me to get out less. Then there was the time when she grounded me for not coming home one night and subsequently found out (through some cellphone snooping that I am still a little bitter about) that I was (underage) drinking with my friends. Not a shining moment for either of us.
I think the best thing I’ve ever done for our relationship was move out of her house. If that sounds harsh, I definitely don’t mean it that way! Moving out allowed me to grow into my own person, yes, but it’s also helped me appreciate how great my mom really is… And how right she is about, well, everything.
Over the almost 6 years since I moved out of my parent’s house, my relationship with my mom has blossomed. That’s not to say that we didn’t have a good relationship when I lived there, because we did. But having a relationship with someone who lives under the same roof is a lot different than having a long distance relationship with someone. I, like most high school seniors, could not wait to get out of my parent’s house and on to bigger and better things. I’m not sure when I realized that the latter half of that sentence was not entirely true (probably somewhere in between not knowing how to cook a good steak and having to kill a bug by myself at 3 o’clock in the morning), but slowly I’m realizing how many of the things my mom tried to teach me turned out to be useful after all.
So thanks, mom, for teaching me…
… how to make a tuna salad sandwich, even though I told you how seeing the process “disgusted me” because the mayo was so “jiggly.” (That’s a technical term.)
… how to thoroughly clean a dirty dish so it doesn’t have to be washed a second time.
… the importance of having clean underwear.
… to be crafty and creative, although I will never be as crafty as you are!
… the importance of washing my face every day, even though I fought you about it when I was younger.
… that money isn’t everything.
… how to do my laundry.
… to always close my dresser drawers, even though I ended up learning the hard way.
… to be comfortable in the kitchen, and thus unlocking my passion for baking.
… giving me room to make my own mistakes, but never being so far away that you couldn’t help me clean them up.
(This list could go on and on.)
I’m lucky to have such a good relationship with my mom. Now that I’m in my twenties, she’s more of a “best friend” mom than anything. We don’t see eye to eye on everything, but I know that she’s always there for me when I have a question about how to cook something, need life advice or just want to chat. She’s probably the only person who can get through to me when I’m being stubborn (much to Tall Guy’s dismay), and I know she always has my best interests at heart. I love the relationship that we have now because I, too, can be there for her when she needs something, which wasn’t the case when I was a self-absorbed moody teenager. I feel like I know her so much better than I ever have and I’m so happy we’re super close. I wouldn’t trade my relationship with my mom for the world.
So don’t forget to thank your mom this Mother’s Day, and make sure to tell her how much you love her. I promise she never gets tired of hearing it.
Happy Mother’s Day, mom! I love you.