An Open Letter To The Woman That Raised Me On Her Own

An Open Letter To The Woman That Raised Me On Her Own

I couldn't have done it without you.

What can I say? It's been a crazy run. I'd never admit it if you asked, but I really have needed the guidance you've given me these last few years. I know I never made it easy on you and I am well aware of how much stress I've caused you, but in the end, it has all been worth it.

I still remember my freshman year when you were always yelling at me for losing focus. While homeschooling probably wasn't the best choice for me, I still never reached the goals I should have. But no matter what, you were always there to give me the kick in the ass I needed. Going back to school brought so many awesome opportunities for me and I really can't thank you enough for supporting me through all 10 of my intended majors. Remember the days when I was going to be a music major and go to medical school? Those were good times. Even though I never really thought that medical school was my true passion, I knew I wanted to find a way to help people like you. I knew that whatever path I chose, if I really set my mind to it, I could do it because you did. While my plans have changed, your example is still my gold standard. Your drive and motivation has always been inspiring. Up until my junior year, I didn't realize how important that drive would be to me.

I'll never forget the look you gave me when I told you that VMI was the only place I wanted to go. As surprised as you were, I could tell that you proud. Believe it or not, that overnight was when I realized that we were the same. Although VMI and Chicago Med. aren't exactly the same, they both require us to be a cut above. For both of us, it's not about natural ability but about a blue-collar work ethic. You were right. My senior year, I hit my academic stride. I knew what I wanted and I knew how to get it. I wanted to get into VMI more than anything else and I know you felt the same way.

Getting that letter was one of the best days of life, not just because I was going to college, but because all of our efforts paid off. As much as I would love to take credit for all that I've done, I just can't. It wouldn't be right. I did the physical work, but you kept me on track. Everything that I have accomplished I have some reason to thank you for. Whether it be support, love, or a firm "get it together kid!", you were always there. As I sit in barracks realizing that in less than a month my time at VMI will officially starts, I couldn't help but realize how much of who I am is because of you. Thank you, Ma.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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To The Grandmothers Who Made Us The Women We Are Today

Sincerely, the loving granddaughters.

The relationship between a grandmother and her granddaughter is something so uniquely special and something to be treasured forever.

Your grandma loves you like you are her own daughter and adores you no matter what. She is the first person you run to when you have a problem with your parents and she never fails to grace you with the most comforting advice.

She may be guilty of spoiling you rotten but still makes sure to stress the importance of being thankful and kind.

Your grandma has most likely lived through every obstacle that you are experiencing now as a young adult and always knows just exactly what to say.

She grew up in another generation where things were probably much harder for young women than they are today.

She is a walking example of perseverance, strength, and grace who you aim to be like someday.

Your grandma teaches you the lessons she had to learn the hard way because she does not want you to make the same mistakes she did when she was growing up.

Her hugs never fail to warm your heart, her smile never fails to make you smile, and her laugh never fails to brighten your day.

She inspires you to be the best version of yourself that you can be.

You only hope that one day you can be the mother and grandmother she was to you.

A piece of girl’s heart will forever belong to her grandma that no one could ever replace.

She is the matriarch of your family and is the glue that holds you all together.

Grandmothers play such an important role in helping their granddaughters to grow into strong, intelligent, kind women.

She teaches you how to love and how to forgive.

Without the unconditional love of your grandma, you would not be the woman you are today.

To all of the grandmothers out there, thank you for being you.


the loving granddaughters

Cover Image Credit: Carlie Konuch

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11 Pieces Of Fatherly Advice Everyone Needs To Be Reminded Of

The greatest man in the world is bound to give the greatest advice.


Months and months ago my father wrote down his favorite quotes and pieces of advice for himself after reading my favorite book, "Tuesdays With Morrie."

He has always given me stellar advice about love, loss and self-worth. Now, I will share it with the world.

This one is for you, Dad.

1. Be bold but not aggressive

This is a personal favorite of mine, especially as an extrovert. I sometimes worry that being the open person I am that I come off too strong or too abrasive.

With this piece of advice though, I remind myself not to "overdo" it. Just be natural.

2. Be confident with room for humility

If there is one thing I have learned from my father it is humility. A sense of humbleness.

I am proud of the person I am, but I have learned to never think I am above anyone else or that I am more important.

3. Love others with all your heart and family with all you are

We are loving people in this household and this piece of advice proves just that.

Despite who you are or what you come off to be, it is important to love friends and lovers with every part of yourself to ensure you did everything you could.

It is important to love family with all you are because lots of the time they made you who you are in the first place.

4. When it comes to dating, even if you don't love them make sure you at least respect them

Not every person you date is "the one." Not every person you date you are going to marry.

Even so, at least respect that person you are seeing. Be polite, be courteous, be kind — be respectful to their needs even if you can't love them.

5. Be patient when it comes to true love, it is rare but so fine

My parents have a love like no other.

They are true loves, soulmates and life partners, BUT it also took time for them to get married.

6. Reserve the harshest judgement for yourself

Tough love is normal. Critiquing is normal.

What is not normal is being cruel and inconsiderate. Leave the harshest judgment for behind closed doors, in a mirror — not towards others.

7. Be tolerant but not submissive

Be patient and kind, to a point. Do not settle for something you do not deserve. Be grateful for what is fair.

8. Don't sweat the small stuff — everything is small stuff

This piece of advice speaks for itself. Do not stress the things that are out of your control. Do not get upset over little things.

In a short period of time, you won't even remember it.

9. Live with passion

Be motivated in your work, in your love, in your friendships and yourself. Living life to the fullest with joy in your heart makes for the best life.

10. Treat the elderly with honor and respect

My dad says that time is a teacher and knowledge is acquired. If it weren't for our elders, we wouldn't learn from the past.

11. Have courage and be kind — remember all your grace

This has become my motto in life. I think it means to be fearless, do things that scare you and stand up for yourself while still being a good person and better yet a KIND person.

It is important to know yourself and be true to you.

So, thank you, dad, for all your words of advice. I couldn't have lived this beautiful life without you.

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