Anyone who knows me well enough knows that there aren't enough words in the world to describe how incredible my mom is.
As a single mother of three girls, she has to put up with a lot, but she greets each challenge with open arms and a contagiously positive attitude. She's there for me through everything, whether it's to confidently remind me of who I am or just to be my number one cheerleader. She's my superhero.
My mom, however, is not my best friend.
She raised us with constant reminders that she isn't here to be our friend, and that she'll always be our mom first. This frustrated me as a kid, always leaving me feeling like I was missing something whenever my friends told me about how casual their relationship with their mom was.
It wasn't until more recently I realized how lucky I was to have a mom who was just that: a mom.
Because truth be told, I didn't need a friend when I bombed a music audition, or when I had my heart broken for the first time or when I was figuring out what to do with myself after I graduated high school. Especially whenever I started doubting myself.
I really needed a mom, and mine was there before I could even ask.
A few days before I moved back to school, my mom and I were shopping for miscellaneous college supplies. I remember as I stepped out of the car, she turned to me with a slight pout and said, "I'm sad you're leaving. I like having you home."
It was there that it hit me that our relationship was changing, and maybe it's because I'm older now, but it was almost like a friendship was starting somewhere.
I think your mom can be your friend, possibly even your best friend. It's a relationship to aspire to have with someone who raised you, taught you everything you know, and was there for you through all of the hard times in your life.
But I'm really glad to have established a mother daughter-dynamic with my mom before even considering her a friend. It's the type of relationship that I can easily say means a lot more than one I'd have with just a friend.
Even as I'm missing her while I'm sitting here writing this, I really lucked out in the mom department. As both a mother and as I'm starting to discover now, a friend.