While growing up, I remember the countless comments from people judging my mother for not having a job. Asking why she doesn't want to go back to school and get a career. Nagging her that she is spoiling me and not parenting me the "correct" way, even though there is no "correct" way to act as a parent. My mother also had to deal with irrelevant snarks from people telling her she is "weird" for having only one child and since she was a jobless mom she "might as well have more children. You have nothing else to do." Sadly, this is how our generation works now, judging people on their private lives and acting as if we have the privilege and the right to.

Mom, this one is for you.

You have always put me before you, making me even feel guilty at times. You stayed home and drove me to all my dance lessons and field hockey practices because YOU wanted to. You never got a full-time job because YOU wanted to make sure you were free when I needed you the most. YOU wanted to give me all the care, attention and love you could, often forgetting to leave some for yourself. All those people that have put you down and gave you unwanted "advice" that was never asked for are just jealous because they want to be you. They wish to be half the person and mom you are, because they know they can never even be 1/4 of you.

I remember when I was little, we would go to McDonald's and I would eat all of my food, you would give me your meal, leaving you with only one or two fries to eat. You chose me over your hunger, a necessity to fulfill in order to live. You chose me over yourself, and you have been doing this everyday since I was born.

My life would not be the same without you. I am so blessed and thankful for you that not even an Odyssey article can articulate it enough. You were always there to drive me to appointments, practices, the mall to shop, the movies for bonding time, and so much more. You helped me with my homework and always were ready to give me the wisest advice. Whenever I start to imagine my life without you, I deflect it because I don't want to think about life without you. My life would be absolutely different without you, my best friend. I would not be the same person I am today by the farthest degree.

Thank you Mom for choosing me over you. Thank you for literally always being there for me. Thank you for choosing to raise me over having a career. Thank you for your love and compassion. I hope to be half the woman you are someday. So thanks Mom, and Happy Mother's Day!