Dear Mom, I Hope You Know

Dear Mom, I Hope You Know

They always say that daughters grow up to be just like their mothers. All I can say is "I hope that's true."

JordynL
JordynL
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Ever since I was little, you fought for me. Granted, every mother fights for their child (or should). But you? You went through so much before I ever became a factor in your life and it made you strong, yet terrified- even though you might never admit it. But once I was here, you knew that that was it. This is what God had intended for you. You knew that your job was to raise and love me with all your heart, and strive to be the best mom that you could be. And you succeeded.

Despite everything that was, and still is, thrown at you, you always managed to stay strong, fight through it all and win. The amount of strength that you have is unbelievable and I honestly have no idea how you do everything you do. All I do know is that you are a force to be reckoned with. Nothing can stand in your way because one way or another, you'll get it taken care of and try your damnedest for perfection.

I also know that raising me wasn't easy. After all, you're right. I'm my father's daughter. I sometimes focus on a tiny detail rather than the big picture, or I say and do things that are beyond stupid. But I'm your daughter too; the relentless attitude, sarcasm, and smartass-ness are 100% you, and even you can't deny that- well you could, but we both know it be bullshit. Regardless, you've never given up. Despite the terrible things I've said to or about you (that you eventually heard directly), I want you to know that in my heart, I didn't mean it. I never have. (Aside from the smidgen of things that you've admitted yourself). I know you know that, but that doesn't make it excusable. Everyone knows raising a daughter isn't easy, and all moms know that they'll eventually be the bad guy in any situation but you always pushed through it. I have to commend you for that.

You were always there, supporting everything that I did and helped every chance you could. All the way through those stupid choir concerts in elementary school that sound God awful, spelling bees, band concerts, performances during football games, marching band and colorguard contests, solo and ensemble, dress shopping for banquets and proms (including having to deal with Band Boosters and other incompetent band parents), high school graduation, college move in/out days, college performances, cheering me on as a member of the rowdiest student organization OSU has to offer, and eventually my soon-to-come college graduation. All this, with every little thing in-between.

You rode my ass through school to make sure I did well, and hell, you still do and I'm in college. True, I did the physical work, but you constantly made sure my head was it the right place. You've always had my back, even when I thought you didn't. If I ever seemed like I was veering off in a different direction, you managed to guide me back to where I needed to be to achieve. All you've ever wanted was for me to succeed. Because of your encouragement, guidance, and pushing me to be the best I can be, I'm attending my dream school and chasing after the profession that I've always wanted.

--

But let's pretend none of that matters for a second.

Regardless of all that, I hope you know that I'm thankful to have you. You. I'm thankful for all the things you've done, sure, but I'm beyond grateful that you are my mom. If I had anyone else, I don't know who or where I would be. I would expect to be the polar opposite of who I am now, if I'm being honest. But I like the person I've become. I like what I'm doing and what I've achieved. The only reason I've gotten as far as I have is because of you. Yes, I have my own drive but you are the one that made it so strong, academically and otherwise. And yes, I have dad and memee that contributed and were there as much as they could be, but at the end of the day they're not you.

We may have gone through constant battles with each other in the past, but now they're far and few between. As I've grown and become more mature, we've become closer and that'll continue. They always say that daughters grow up to be their mothers, and all I can say is "I hope that's true".

You are independent, intelligent, loving, caring, beautiful, responsible, respectable, funny, protective, brave, loyal, and most importantly: strong.

And don't you dare let anyone tell you otherwise.

I can only hope that when I'm older, I'll be like you. I know I'm already on my way, but that doesn't change the fact that I have big shoes to fill. I hope I'll be at least half the woman and mother that you are. And when the time comes for you to pass the torch, I hope I'm ready, worthy, and strong enough to take on everything you have.

But let's avoid that for as long as possible please.

This, admittedly, doesn't express my complete appreciation for you; nor does it express the fear of eventually losing you. I hope and pray that day doesn't come for a while. I can't imagine not be able to call or surprise you on the weekends. But again, let's avoid that for as long as possible.

I sincerely hope you know how much I appreciate you and everything you've done and sacrificed for me. I hope you know that you are the reason that I've made it as far as I have. I hope you know that you're the reason I keep striving to be the best I can, not only for myself, but because you did the same thing for me time and time again. I hope I'm making you proud and plan to never stop trying.

But most importantly, I hope you know how much I love you.

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6 Things I Didn't Really Need in My Freshman Dorm, And 6 Things I Wish I Brought Instead

I promise you, being Pinterest-worthy just doesn't make sense in a dorm.
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As I packed up my dorm room and unpacked it all once I got home, I kinda felt stupid. I moved in with 2 cars full of stuff (yes, I know how extra that sounds and yes, it was indeed that extra) and I didn't end up needing half of it. Now, I'm swimming in stuff I need to get rid of while holding on to the stuff I didn't realize I would need and ended up buying mid-year. No matter how much you think you know everything, first-time dorm residents, please listen.

6 things I DIDN'T need but swore I did

1. All my personal books

I mean, I'm an English major and I love to read, but no one, and I mean no one, A) has free time and B) uses that free time to read in college.

2. Keurig

There's a coffee shop I can use my cafe credits at on my way to class. I never woke up early enough to brew my own coffee, and I never craved it bad enough in the afternoon to feel like I needed to make my own immediately. It was nice to make tea with though.

3. Dishes and Silverware/Excessive Mugs

All you need is 1 mug and a couple of water bottles. I promise you paper plates and plastic silverware are all you need.

4. An overabundance of office supplies

I didn't use all those fancy office supplies in high school, so as much as I love them, I have yet to reach for them in college.

5. T.V.

The T.V. I had was only slightly bigger than my laptop screen and the wifi at my dorm wasn't good enough for streaming. I hardly used it, but I know others used theirs a lot. Just a personal preference!

6. Tons of wall art

I totally believe wall art has the power to make a dorm room feel less institutional, but I wish I had brought more pictures from home to make my room personal. Pinterest dorm rooms just aren't real, and they aren't what you want when you're homesick.

6 things I wish I had bought before school started

1. ID Lanyard

I personally love these ones from Vera Bradley , but honestly, any way you can carry your ID, money, and keys all in one is a life changer.

2. Earplugs/Eye Mask

Dorms are loud even during quiet hours and sometimes your roommate stays up later or gets up earlier than you do. Amazon couldn't ship these to me fast enough.

3. Wireless Headphones/Earbuds

Personally, I'm an earbuds girl, but either one does the trick. It's nice to not have to deal with cords and to be able to connect to any of your devices without an adapter.

4. Laptop Shell/Stickers

Almost everyone ends up ordering stickers to put on their laptop to express themselves to those around them. On a practical level though, you're probably going to have the same laptop as 5+ other students in your lecture and you will probably throw your laptop in a bag and run at some point. A shell and some stickers will provide more protection than you realize. Check out http://www.redbubble.com for some great options.

5. Small vacuum

This is especially important if you get a rug. Sweeping is not pleasant, and the vacuums at your dorm are probably older than you are.

6. Pictures from home

Like I said before, wall art isn't going to comfort you when you want to go home. A picture of your dog or best friend sure will though.


Cover Image Credit: Lauren Gherna

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My Life Has Not Been The Same Since I Met My Father

He showed me angels, and told me I could put my weapons down because I've got protectors.

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I rang in 2019 with sexual sin and instead of being convicted, I felt condemnation (see previous blog post). This, coupled with isolation and watching my fellow seniors have future plans while I didn't have any for post-undergrad, caused me to be in a dark place from January to the first week of April. I honestly didn't want to live anymore, convinced there was no point to my life. Three months, 1 week, and 3 days later, I went on my first A Life Retreat from April 11th to the 14th.

We arrived at the retreat site on the 11th at night so I was just expectant for the next day, but I was trying not to be excited because I didn't want to be brokenhearted if Jesus passed me by. On the 12th, during the last session for the day, many of my peers were getting delivered. I was praying for their deliverance while hoping for my encounter with Christ. However, something shifted in me and I became jealous. I remember thinking I wish I had some demons in me so that God will finally pay me some attention (we could unpack another day so this post isn't 5 pages long). I began to doubt God, I stopped praying and was looking around with a cynical smile on my face.

After the leadership team dismissed us, I went to sit down, angry and dejected. Someone asked me if I was okay. I lied, answering yes. Another person asked me; I lied again. A third person asked, and I finally told the truth saying, "no, but it's whatever". She asked if she could pray for me and I said, "you can do what you want but it's not going to change anything". I reasoned, if God won't show up for me when I prayed for myself, why would He show up when someone else does. With persistence, she began to pray for me, but I wasn't paying attention. I was just thinking she will be done soon and go her way.

She didn't end quickly so I began hearing the words of her prayer. She was saying, "God loves you." I was chuckling, thinking yeah, right. As she continued to pray those sweet words over me, telling me what God was saying and thinking about me, I began to speak out loud what was in mind, telling her that she was lying. After some back and forth, some A Life leaders came over and began to pray for me and after a good fight, deliverance took place. I became free from the stronghold of the spirit of doubt.

The next day, I was hypersensitive to the voice of God. At the beginning of the first session, I heard Him tell me to put my shield down and what I saw behind it was incredible. I had detached a part of myself that was much younger than the current me and I would transfer all the blame of my past onto her. Everything I hated about myself I put on her (this younger version of me). God told me I was supposed to unite with her, but I didn't want to. I told myself I was shielding her to protect her, but actually, I was trying to hide her in order to hate myself less or to avoid judgment. I couldn't move forward until we became one. After another deliverance session in which I was able to forgive myself and reconcile all parts of me, I felt empty, but in a good way. While on break for the day, I remember thanking God for freeing me and asking Him to fill me back up.

Throughout the last session on the 13th, He showed up and showed out for His little girl. I saw multiple visions of how much God loves me. I don't really have an intimate relationship with my natural father so what happened that night was pivotal in my life.

In my first vision, while I was praising and worshipping Him, God told me to rest my head on His shoulder while He told me how much He loves me.

Then He told me to lay my head on his lap and at this point, I'm crying because He's also telling me how He feels about me and how beautiful I am.

He showed me angels, multitudes, and told me I could put my weapons away because I've got protectors and defenders.

He told me that they had always been there even when I could not see them and He did all this while hugging me.

There was so much more that God told me and showed me, but I'm focusing on these few because it tackled the daddy issues and brother issues I had.

My life has literally not been the same ever since April 13th, 2019. I don't even know how to put into words how my life has been, how I have felt, how much love I have in my life. I just want everyone else in the world to feel what I feel, to know what I know, to encounter WHO I encountered. I also want to thank the A Life leadership team. Just in case any of you are reading this, "thank you. I can only imagine the amount of time you had to spend in your secret place with The Most High so that you were able to war for me, and the other A Lifers with Him in the open. May our Father replenish and reward you for being dedicated to people to see them saved and FREE. I love you all."

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