As kids, we tend to take for granted all that our parents do for us. Not necessarily because we are too self-involved to notice, but rather because we are oblivious to how much parents do for us seemingly effortlessly. Even though I know that I can never show enough gratitude for all that my parents have done for me, have sacrificed for me, this is my attempt to say thank you.

My parents are my heroes, my role models, and the people I strive to be every day. They have always been there for me and I know they always will be.

Something I am immensely grateful to my Dad for is the sheer amount of time he spent in an effort to be able to see my sister and I. When my parents divorced we had to switch houses every other day and my parents lived a half hour apart. My dad was always the one who drove to get us, I cannot begin to imagine how many thousands of miles he has logged in the past decade to pick up my sister and I, just to see us or to take us to activities. Though it must have been awful having to spend so much time in the car, my Dad never complained. In fact, he made the best of it and some of my most cherished memories are with him in the car. Between singing songs (entirely off key) to playing slug bug we found a way to make the most of our time together.

My Stepmom always brings so much creativity and happiness to my life. When I was younger, she made a point of doing crafts with us or making us lunches with special notes. If I have learned one thing from her, it is how to love. She lives her life so fully and truly knows how to make others around her smile. I am so grateful for having a role model like her in my life.

As a kid, I tried a little bit of everything. From sports to public speaking, every step of the way my parents supported me. When I was having a hard day or wanted to give up, my parents were always the push I needed, and the encouraging voices in my corner. For this, I will always be grateful, some of the activities I considered quitting ended up benefitting me so much and helped shape me into the person I am today. Their support always made me feel loved and encouraged as a kid and is a quality I hope to always demonstrate towards my loved ones.

In addition to being dedicated to my siblings and me, my parents have always instilled a desire for an endless quest for knowledge. Between modeling this value in helping me with homework my parents have always emphasized the importance of being a life-long learner. If I dare glance at my email box I can guarantee you that it will have at least three emails from my parents of newspaper articles I should read. Even though I don’t always take the time to read them all I admire that they have the drive to stay informed and are constantly pursue knowledge. My parent’s encouragement and inspiration are things I am extremely thankful for and are qualities I hope to possess.

While I realize I can never truly say thank you for all the support, encouragement, laughs, and the love, I hope that, this, at least, is a start.