By Barton Goldsmith/Tribune News Service
Our mothers are unique. Each mom has her own special way of dealing with the world and helping you cope along the way. Mother’s Day is just one way of giving back or paying it forward. Don’t miss the opportunity. Here are a few things to remember:
1) She changed your diapers. This may not seem like such a big deal until you have to do it a dozen times a day. Back when I was a baby, Pampers hadn’t been invented yet. No matter how you look at it, raising a kid is a ton of work.
2) Mom was there to dry your tears. When life hurts, she’s there. When my kid sister went on the attack, mom came to the rescue. She dried the tears and told my sister never to hit me in the face (guess she didn’t want to ruin my good looks). When life hurt me on the inside, she was there to tell me it would be okay, and I believed her.
3) She put up with you as a teenager. Or maybe she is still putting up with you (and you’re 30). Look, you know what a pain you were. Most of us worked at it. Yet mom was still there when our dates dumped us, and she helped us navigate the difficult road of becoming an adult.
4) She made a choice to be the person you could always turn to. After becoming somewhat self-sufficient (being able to make our own grilled cheese sandwiches), we may not be as dependent on our moms. But your mom is always there for you if you need her.
5) She nursed you when you were sick. And probably got a cold or two from you. Having someone to take care of you when you are ill is a gift. Think about it. If not for your mom, you might be a very sickly person, and that makes it harder to enjoy this life.
6) She’s taking care of things the other 364 days of the year. She’s doing thing maybe for you, maybe for other people, and maybe even a little for herself, but for one solid day, she deserves to feel cherished. I’ll leave it to you to figure out just how to do that.
7) Moms give us nurturing, empathy and sympathy like no one else. These three things can make the difference between a life of invalidation and one where you have the confidence to go for your dreams.
8) She made you a better person. Yes, mothers have their own brand of motivation, and sometimes it doesn’t feel very good. They know that deep down in our hearts, we never want to disappoint them. Her job was to make you a successful adult, so if you are happy about your life, she deserves a little something special. If not, the two of you should have a deep conversation, so you can get there. It’s never too late.
9) She wanted to bring you into the world and share it with you. It takes a lot to decide to raise a child, more than most people know (until doing it). The process of the next twenty years isn’t much easier, but the fulfilment is worth the stress _ for both of you. Think about it. If not for her, you wouldn’t be here.
10) Mom will always kiss your boo-boo and make it better. There is something unreplaceable about a mother’s love. There is magic there, and she will always find a way to help you deal with your trials and tribulations. After all, she’s been doing it for a long time, so just let her, and you’ll both be better for it.
If you do not have a relationship with your mom, I suggest that you find a woman who has been good to you and give her something to celebrate. Honour those women who have helped make your world more enjoyable.
- Dr Barton Goldsmith, a psychotherapist in Westlake Village, California, is the author of The Happy Couple: How to Make Happiness a Habit One Little Loving Thing at a Time. Follow his daily insights on Twitter at @BartonGoldsmith, or e-mail him at [email protected]
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