When I was younger, all I did was wish that you would be more like my friend's parents. I hated that all of the other kids around me had inside jokes from shows I could not watch. I despised you when all of the kids in my class were singing and dancing to songs I had never heard of so I had to sit at my desk and color. I thought that the way you were raising me was holding me back. Little did I know, the way that you were raising me would make me into the strong, respecting, independent woman that I am today.

Thank you for always asking "who, where, and when." It used to aggravate me to no end, but now that I am older I understand that it was because you cared. Now that I know just how scary the world we live in is, I understand why you needed to know who I was with, where I was, and when I was going.

Thank you for not letting me go to all those parties in high school, turns out parties aren't all that great.

Thank you for not letting me hang out with the "popular" kids who threw those parties because — newsflash — popularity doesn't roll over to college.

Thank you for telling me no, even when you could have said yes. Sure, it sucked, but it taught me to respect someone even when they told me no instead of making a big deal out of it. I have seen grown adults who throw temper tantrums when their parents tell them 'no' and it makes me embarrassed for them. I used to wonder why they acted that way and it is because they never learned how to accept the word "No."

Thank you for not letting me quit, ever. You made me try every sport known to man, and even when we realized that I couldn't hit a ball or stay on the beat you made me finish out the season. You taught me that quitting was not ever an option and to always finish what I started even if I wasn't any good at it.

Thank you for making me say "thank you" even when that person did not deserve it. You taught me respect. Because of you, I know how to treat others with respect.

I know raising me wasn't easy, I know I am hard headed and independent. I know that it may seem like I didn't appreciate you, but it is because I didn't, and I am sorry for that. Now I am an adult, and when I think about how I got to this point in my life I think of you, mom and dad. I think about how you raised me to be strong and independent yet still respectful.

Now that I understand why you were so strict, I am saying thank you for being the amazing parents you were and always will be.