As Mother’s Day came and went this year, I know I wasn’t alone in reflecting upon the countless ways my mom taught me to be the woman that I am today. My mom raised me to be strong and independent through her own example and the lessons she taught me as I grew up.
Thank You, Mom…
I truly can’t thank her enough, but I’m going to try. Some of the few things I want to thank her for include these gems.
Telling Me I Can Do Anything
From buying me science kits to doing crazy experiments in the driveway with me, my mom always encouraged me to be anything I wanted. She allowed me to explore any activities and hobbies that I showed interest in. She drove me to science camp, gymnastics, band and countless other activities so I could discover all the world has to offer.
By never steering me away from things traditionally male-oriented, my mom taught me I can do anything — either as a profession or a hobby. She always pushed me to follow my dreams and never gave up on me, even if I told her that, when I grew up, I wanted to be an astronaut.
Teaching Me I’m Equal to Men
My mom taught me that men are simply fellow human beings. She showed me firsthand that women are equally capable of everything that men are.
Whenever she was involved in a parent group at my school or any other organization, my mom took the reins and held a position of leadership. I never once believed she didn’t have what it took to take charge and get things done. Traditionally, leadership roles and management positions are reserved for men, but my mom broke that barrier easily and showed me women are equal to men in every way.
Showing Me How I Should be Treated
My mom is a sweetheart, so she didn’t have many enemies. In the rare case that she was being mistreated or taken advantage of, she wouldn’t take it. She was quick to defend herself and never held back her thoughts and opinions, no matter who she was talking to.
From the very beginning, my mom taught me that I deserve to be respected and treated kindly. She showed me how to defend myself respectfully if I am ever mistreated. To this day, I know that I get my strong-willed personality from her.
For Teaching Me to Love Myself
It’s easy today for young girls to have body image issues and mental health problems because of the negative images they are constantly faced with. My mom never allowed me to feel badly about myself and, when I did, she would do everything she could to encourage a healthy relationship with my body and my mind.
My mom taught me how healing a night on the couch with popcorn and movies can be. She showed me how to show my emotions in healthy ways and encouraged me to be open with her. All this led to my belief in the power of self-love. She taught me to believe in myself no matter what and how to go through life with a smile on my face.
…Love, a Grateful Daughter
This list could go on, and I know I’m one of the lucky girls who was raised by an extremely strong woman. My mom taught me everything I know about being the lady I am today, and a thousand thank-yous wouldn’t be enough to show my gratitude.