They say the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
I have talked a lot about my dad and what I have learned through his diagnosis with Parkinson’s Disease (read here or here), so I want to take some time today to discuss what I have learned from my equally inspiring and scintillating mother.
Five Things I Have Learned from My Mom:
- Be Generous. My favorite thing about my mom is her generosity. She is the most giving person I know, a trait I think she inherited from her mother. One of the memories that first comes to mind when I think of my mom is a time when a friend complimented a bracelet she was wearing and her response was to take it off and say, “Here, have it! Wear it and think of me!” Since seeing that exchange years ago, I have made it a goal to some day do the same.
- Be Peppy. Throughout my entire life my friends have always told me how peppy my mom is and often have asked me if she used to be a cheerleader. Although she never was an actual cheerleader, she is definitely one figuratively. My mom is my biggest supporter, and does a great job of supporting other people around her as well, like her coworkers, her parents, and my dad. Through my mom, I have learned the importance of fostering an encouraging environment instead of a competitive one. I have tried to take after her in my work partnerships, my friendships, and my relationships.
- Make Time for the Things You Love. My mom has always made time for the things that mattered to her. Growing up, we have always gone to plays, visited museums, and attended other events that were passing through LA (like Cirque Du Soleil). Through these experiences I have realized how important it is to invest your money into the things you love. My dad, who has always been more of the “you make money to save” side, is often challenged by my mother’s mentality of “you make money to live a life that makes you happy.” On the flip side, my mom also taught me how you don’t necessarily need money to find happiness. Sometimes you just have to stop and smell the roses.
- Ask for Help. My mom is always willing to offer help, and lucky for me, she gives great advice. I know that I can go to her for anything. Whether it is answering a question I have about an interview, needing a second opinion on my writing, or wanting an outsider’s opinion on a friendship, my mom always has my back. What’s more, she doesn’t just give me the answer I want to hear (which often frustrates me so much I walk out of the room), but instead gives me the advice that she really thinks will help me the most. Like a true friend, my mom ‘keeps it real,’ and although it may not always seem like it, I do thank her for that.
- Know Your Drink Limit.Another valuable lesson I have learned from my mom is to know your drink limit! Like my mom, my alcohol tolerance is relatively low, so I have followed in her footsteps by knowing my drink limit. Most importantly, she has taught me to always drink responsibly. The first time I ever saw her really buzzed was on a cruise celebrating her 25th wedding anniversary to my father where she kept proclaiming, “Hey, I don’t have to captain the ship!”
Mom, thanks for being my travel-buddy, my proof-reader, and my never-ending source of inspiration. Thank you for trusting me when I ask to borrow your fancy jewelry and for engraining in me the importance of sending hand-written thank you notes. Thank you for teaching me that happiness is an attractive quality and for letting me witness over the years the importance of having a solid group of girlfriends.
Thank you for teaching me to “choose happiness” and that, in life, you are always faced with two options: to laugh or to cry. Like you, mom, I choose to laugh.
You are simply the best.
How does your mom inspire you to be a better person? Let us know below.