Lessons From Mom

9 Lessons I Learned From My Mom That I Didn't Realize I Needed But Did At The End Of The Day

Mother knows best.

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My mom is my best friend. After all, she was my first friend.

From packing school lunches at midnight to driving my siblings and me around early in the morning, my mom somehow seems to do it all. While to many she may just seem like a normal mom, she will always be a superhero in my eyes.

Ever since I was little, I've looked up to my mom in hopes of one day being even the slightest bit the woman she is. Throughout my 18 years of life, there are many lessons she has taught me that I can't thank her enough for and I will never forget. Here are just a few of those that I hold close to my heart.

1. Hard work always pays off.

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Throughout my time living at home, I was constantly busy. Balancing school, extracurriculars, work, and a social life wasn't always the easiest thing to do for me. I can remember countless times when I stayed up doing work until the sun began to rise and cried because I was so exhausted. However, my mom's constant reminders that my hard work would pay off always kept me going. Without her reminders, I would have most likely given up on things who have made me the woman that I am today.

2. Wash your makeup off before bed.

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This one may sound pretty self-explanatory but can be so easy to forget. After a long day or night, there is nothing more I want than to jump straight into my bed and pass out. Luckily, because of my mom, there is a little light bulb that lights up in my head and reminds me to wash my makeup off before I hop into bed. Thanks to her I never have to worry about morning breakouts or dirty pillowcases.

3. A little kindness goes a long way.

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My mom is one of the kindest people I have ever met. Regardless of how someone treats her, she always is nice in return. Growing up, she constantly encouraged me to be nice to people, even the ones who weren't so nice to me. I have always been taught to treat the janitor with the same respect I would use to treat a CEO. Learning that lesson at a young age helped me to avoid unnecessary drama and make connections I would've never thought I could have.

4. Close the shower curtain after your shower.

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For about three straight years, I had my name screamed to go back and close the shower curtain every day after getting out of the shower. I never really understood the importance of doing it but living on my own has taught me that I should've started listening to my mom earlier. Mold is not your friend and I now remember to close the shower curtain every time I get out. It only takes two seconds, just do it.

5. Not everybody is going to like you.

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This statement can be very hard to accept. This is something the two of us constantly remind each other. I've always been a people pleaser and my mom is the same way. When I sense that somebody around me doesn't like me or is rude to me, I get upset very easily. People can be mean and sometimes it seems like there is no reason for it. You never really know what is going on inside someone's head. Whether they're being rude to you because they are insecure or just bored, you shouldn't let somebody else's view of you make you feel down. For every person that doesn't like you, there is a handful more that do.

6. Complaining is a waste of time.

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As humans, not everything is always going to go the way we want it to. However, you are in control of your own happiness. When something goes wrong you can either choose to make the best out of it or sit around and sulk. Being taught to take the path where I make the best out of things has made me a lot happier than the people who decide to sit around and sulk.

7. Know your priorities.

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My mom always has a lot going on in her life but still manages to make time for her family and friends. While sometimes it can be hard to get a reach of her when she's working, she is always there if I need her. My mom believes that family is a priority and always makes sure that we feel we are being put first.

8. Learn from your mistakes.

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Mistakes are inevitable. Nobody is perfect and everybody messes up at times. There is no reason to get upset and think everything is ruined because of a mistake. Making the best out of your mistakes and looking at them as a learning opportunity can help to teach you important life lessons. Making mistakes and learning from them is a necessary part of growing up.

9. Mothers do know best.

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I can't think of a single instance where my mom has told me something was going to go wrong and it didn't. In high school, I can remember bickering with my mom when she didn't like a certain one of my friends or didn't think it was smart for me to go somewhere. Yet every single time the friends she didn't feel the best about ended up hurting me and the places she didn't want me to go ended up being sketchy. Thank you for always having my best interest.

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14 Things You Learn From Having A Bad Ass Mom

Have fun and take no shit.
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Not only is my Mom awesome, but she is pretty bad ass!

"Here's to strong women. May we know them. May we be them. May we raise them."

Here are 14 things that you learn from having a badass Mom.

1. Being independent is the most important thing.

If you need someone else for something you could do, but just don't know how... learn to do it! You are much more capable than you think you are. Self- sufficiency is a very important ingredient for being badass.

2. Pick your battles.

Sometimes you're gonna need to walk away from a potential screaming match. Learning when to let it be is so important. An old lady took your front row parking spot at Target? Take a breath and find another one. The drive-thru kid at Chick-fil-a only gave you a single chick fil a sauce? Riot.

3 . Being loud and being powerful are separate entities.

Handling tense situations with eloquence and a calm tone is difficult sometimes. Knowing when to raise your voice is also something that takes a lot of practice to master. When you figure out how to use your actual words instead of volume to handle situations, you will be even more powerful.

4. Don't let anyone tell you that you can't.

Knowing your abilities and being able to shove them in the faces of those who doubt you is pretty badass. Just Sayin'.

5. It's OK to take a loss.

Being perfect all of the time is so unrealistic. Whether it be in relationships, work, friendships, or even directions sometimes you're going to lose. Taking a loss is okay as long as you learn from it.

6. Have fun and take no shit.

Have the time of your life unless someone is not treating you right. There will be times that you will need to call someone out for not treating you right. Do not be afraid to cut out people that are putting a damper on your good time.

7. Don't be afraid to tell a man to sit down.

If a man thinks that he is better than you just because he has one X chromosome instead of two do not be afraid to put him in his place.

8. It’s totally OK to not be like everyone else.

Do you boo, even if you have not found your people yet. You will find your people eventually, but until then hanging out with your mom on a friday night is not a bad decision... sometimes she can even be more fun than your friends.

9. Make a fuss if you need to make a fuss.

When you’ve picked an important battle you need to make your fuss. Make your words heard and make your words powerful if it is an issue that you need to go full throttle on do it and do not regret it.

10. If a problem can be fixed with money it’s not a problem.

Focus on the important things in life. If the problem can be fixed with a mani-pedi or chicken nuggets fix it quickly and move on.

11. Stand up for yourself.

You have a voice, might as well use it. If someone or something's not right, say something. Even if it is just a Starbucks order don't be afraid to let them know, it really is not that big of a deal of them, they will not hate you THAT much.

12. Keep laughing no matter what.

Being a badass means that you are strong even when you don't want to be. Laughter is the best medicine and the easiest way to turn a frown. A little bit of humor can turn an obstacle into an adventure.

13. Good ice cream can fix almost anything.

Taking a breath and getting a sugar fix can handle some of the most stubborn moods. There is no better way to explore new flavors and creameries than with your badass mom. Trust me.

14. Even the biggest badass needs a hug sometimes.

Even though you and your mom are both quite badass you are human. Random meltdowns happen and sometimes a mom hug is all you need. Even if you have to drive out to her work and pull her out of a meeting to get it.

Cover Image Credit: Tayla Goers

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To My Beautiful Mother, Thank You For Everything

Here's the best "Thank You" I can put into words.

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Today was not my day.

We were in the middle of a CVS and I started crying because I saw this Mike Wazowksi stuffed animal, and it reminded me of how fast I'm growing up. It was really, really stupid. You gave me your sunglasses to cover my blotchy eyes and told me to pretend we were at the pharmacy because I had an eye infection. I was sniffling and wearing these ridiculously oversized sunglasses (because sometimes you dress like an honest-to-god celebrity), and all the pharmacists and the people in line looked at us like we were insane. You didn't care. We drove around for a bit in your brand new car and you told me that there are just days like this and that I was going to be okay.

Later tonight, I went out for some fresh air. You picked me up in your pajama pants. I could tell that you were really tired. From the kitchen now, I can see the edge of your socks on our Michigan blanket. You were watching your lawyer show and you fell asleep on the couch again. Thanks for picking me up.

Dad says that when we were still living in that two-flat on Carmen, you liked to play Van Morrison and dance around in circles with me. "Into The Mystic" was our favorite one. To this day, I still love when I hear Van sing, "We were born before the wind." and when I'm away at school and they play"Brown-Eyed Girl" at the bar, I always think of our old house.

It used to be just me, you, dad, and a black lab. I was your first kid, and you and dad were barely 30 when I was born. You are both tan and happy in our first family photos. I like to think that the two of you were pretty excited to have me. I remember when dad painted The Cow Jumped Over The Moon on the far wall of my bedroom. There would be this big, bright-yellow saucer moon, and a smiling spoon holding hands with a dish waiting for me when I came home. I know that you wanted me to be a happy kid from the very first day. You dressed me like a chubby little corn on the cob for my first Halloween.

You watched "Monsters Inc." with me on the couch almost every night, and I know you got tired of it. You walked me around the neighborhood with stroller shaped like a little red car and we were the coolest chicks on the block. I lost my favorite stuffed animal, this spotted little dog, and we searched together for hours. You even helped me make "MISSING" posters and post them around the neighborhood, in case I left him at the park or playing outside. You brushed out my curls every morning before school even when I screamed and cried and fought you. You drove me to violin practice on Tuesday nights and let me play my Taylor Swift CD's on the way there, as long as you could listen to your music on the way back. One year you even took me to see her in concert at the Allstate Arena. You bought me a Taylor Swift poster, and we watched her music videos together on the home computer. You worked hard so I could have a good childhood.

You opened your own law practice and saved up money so I could go to this fancy, private school in the West Loop. The people there were different than me. They dressed differently and talked in a different way than I'd grown up with. To be crass, the majority of them had lots of money- and they acted like it. So, what did you do? You busted your ass off, and in addition to paying what was essentially college tuition, you took me shopping at Vineyard Vines so I could fit in with the kids at school. That was almost too nice of you. Like, maybe you should have just told me to shut up, wear the clothes I had already, and deal with it. You're too giving for that.

During the winter when the days were hard and everything just felt crappy, I took the Taylor Street bus to your office after school. You always gave me money to go get Chipotle across the street. You cleared out the conference room so I could either nap or do homework. We drove home together from downtown and the traffic was always unbearable, but we talked about what was going on in our lives as we inched down the highway. On the days like those, I felt like you were my best and truest friend in the world.

You taught me to be down-to-earth, and that a glass of wine a day is good for the health.

You didn't bat an eye when I told you I wanted to major in journalism. You stayed up late with me one night when I was a little bit... "sick", and ran a marathon the next day. I watched you run a political campaign and win fair-and-square. You refused to play into the games of politics, and I watched you become a Cook County Judge because of how fair and genuine you are. You taught me that dark hair and red lipstick will never go out of style. You taught me that a clean house is essential for peace of mind. You told me to never go to bed mad at someone I love.

So mother, as I reflect on the day we went through together today, I want you to know that the way you care for me will never go unnoticed. You are a kickass, professional woman, but also a pretty fun lady to be around. Thanks for your wisdom.

Thanks for everything.

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