An Open Thank-You Letter To My Mom

An Open Thank-You Letter To My Mom

Words are not enough to thank you for all you have given me, but I can try.
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Dear Mom,

Words are not enough to thank you for all you have given me, but I can try.

From the moment you found out you were finally pregnant with a girl, you loved me— even though you thought, at first, that I was the flu.

When Dad was travelling, you held it all together. You put your life on hold and stopped working when I was sick at home for years, and the moment I was better, you went back to work to help pay the bills and put us through the best education in the city.

When my brothers struggled, you blamed yourself. You cried every day because your heart was broken. But Mom, kids make mistakes and none of it was your fault.

When Dad was out of work, your heart was failing and you needed your pacemaker, you still worked every day, putting on a smile for none of us to worry.

When I wanted to be Dorothy, a cowgirl, a pop star, and a saloon girl for Halloween, you picked out the best fabric and worked dawn till dusk sewing it.

When I thought I was Hannah Montana, you fought for weeks to find tickets to her show, even though it sold out in two minutes. You succeeded, made T-shirts, bedazzled binoculars, and even bought a new memory card simply for the occasion.

Whether we wanted an orange cake with buttercream icing, a cheesecake, or meatballs for our birthdays, you made them with no complaints and a smile from ear to ear.

When my brother became a vegan, you looked up recipes to accommodate, yet made sure the rest of us could eat the food too. And you accepted him just as easily when he decided he wasn't one anymore as well.

When I went on a "Gossip Girl" binge, you crushed on Chuck Bass right beside me, bought me more Blair-esque headbands, and even upped your own style to come across as a Cincinnati Upper East Side version of Eleanor and Blair.

When you promised we would go to Paris when I graduated high school, you followed through without any hesitation. It was the best trip of my life, and there is no one I would rather drink champagne, eat great cheese, and see the Eiffel Tower with than you.

When I was going through rough times and wanted to change schools, you forgave me for my mistakes, drove hours to be by my side, and walked me through the process— motivating me and keeping me strong through it all.

When I decided to quit swimming and focus solely on dance, you pulled all-nighters in the hotel rooms to make sure my dress was ready before the competitions the next day.

When I had a play, you were the first in the audience and the last to leave, even if I was just a chorus member second from the back right. You joined the costume committee to contribute to my interests and spent hours working extra at home after your hospital rotations to make sure everyone had a costume and looked good in it.

When I was up screaming with an ear infection, you sat with me the whole time and made sure I had an appointment the next day no matter what—even if the staff yelled at you that I couldn't have special treatment. You made it happen.

When Ryan and Eileen said you were going to be a grandmother, I have never seen anyone more excited about something in his or her life than you were. I know the distance is hard, but you manage and love Declan more than anyone ever could.

When you had patients who treated you unfairly, were crude, and didn't follow the orders given to them, you remained kind to them even when no one else was.

When we said we hated you, treated you horribly, disobeyed you, or didn't call you enough, you loved us unconditionally.

When we wanted to ride a ride at Disney World, you followed right behind and made sure we were even fit into the lunch schedule at Cinderella's castle that had already been booked for months. You're sneaky like that, but I love that about you.

When everything else seemed to go wrong, you made it right again. You're my own superhero, Mom, and I will never be able to thank you enough for all that you do. I love you because you don't see the beauty you bring to other people's lives. You are an inspiration and the best mother anyone could ask for even though you don't know you are.

Thank you for loving us like no one ever will and for all you do. I know it sometimes is underappreciated and often seems overlooked, but we do remember and love you more than anything and a million thank-yous will never be enough.

Love, your daughter

Cover Image Credit: http://realitytvgifs.tumblr.com/post/50201691214

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When You Make A Girl An Aunt, You Change Her World In All The Best Ways

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the happiest girl in the world.

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My brother and his wife recently blessed our family with the sweetest bundle of joy on planet earth. OK, I may be a little bias but I believe it to be completely true. I have never been baby crazy, but this sweet-cheeked angel is the only exception. I am at an age where I do not want children yet, but being able to love on my nephew like he is my own is so satisfying.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her a very protective person.

From making sure the car seat is strapped in properly before every trip, to watching baby boy breathe while he sleeps, you'll never meet someone, besides mommy and daddy of course, who is more concerned with the safety of that little person than me.

When you make a girl an aunt, you give her a miniature best friend.

There is something about an aunt that is so fun. An aunt is a person you go to when you think you're in trouble or when you want something mom and dad said you couldn't have. An aunt is someone who takes you to get ice cream and play in the park to cool down after having a temper tantrum. I can't wait to be the one he runs to.

When you make a girl an aunt, she gets to skip on the difficulty of disciplining.

Being an aunt means you get to be fun. Not to say I wouldn't correct my nephew if he were behaving poorly, but for the most part, I get to giggle and play and leave the hard stuff for my brother.

When you make a girl an aunt, you give her the best listening ears.

As of right now I only listen to the sweet coos and hungry cries but I am fully prepared to listen to all the problems in his life in the future.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the best advice giver.

By the time my nephew needs advice, hopefully, I will have all of my life lessons perfected into relatable stories.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her a number-one fan

Anything you do in life sweet boy, I will be cheering you on. I already know you are going to do great things.

When you make a girl an aunt, she learns what true love is.

The love I have for my nephew is so pure. Its the love that is just there. I don't have to choose to show love every day, I don't have to forgive, I don't have to worry if it is reciprocated, it is just there.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the happiest person in the world.

I cannot wait to watch my precious nephew grow into the amazing person that I know he is going to be.

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House Hunting At Its Finest

It's incredibly stressful and takes way too long!

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House hunting is hard. I thought at first it would be fun, exciting, and interesting. But now, I'm tired and bored and just want to give up.

I've been looking for a house for a month now and I knew it going in to it, it would take a while. I knew that I wouldn't just walk into the first house and be like, "this is it, this is the one".

But, when you look at 6-10 houses every time you search a day, it gets stressful and tiring.

When I started looking at houses it was because I was planning on getting a house with some friends to rent out for the next 3 years while at UCF. All because I didn't get a spot-on campus with the lottery, I got waitlisted. So, I need to look for housing to secure a place to live next fall.

Now, my dad wants to turn it into a small business. Buy a house, rent out the rooms for a reasonable price, cheaper than some apartments, and make a profit.

It sounds like a good plan.

But then you have to factor in: location and how far it is from campus, the price range in which you could make a profit, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the price per square inch, the property taxes, if the house needs work or not, upgrades, improvement, parking availability, etc. The list just goes on and on.

It's hard to find the "perfect" house.

I want to be able to make it "home" for the next 3 years. I want to make it somewhere where I can hang out, have friends over, and love to live in.

Every time I walk into a new house, I automatically think, "what would I do to this room? Or that?". I think of furniture and décor. I think about how I would design it and make it ours.

I even made a Pinterest board, one for home décor and one for bedrooms.

I feel like I'm going overboard but I can't help it.

I get excited when it comes to the designing aspect, but my parents have to be so nit-picky. They came up over the weekend to search for houses with me and every time we walk into a house I hear: "the carpet is stained, needs to be removed", "the kitchen is outdated, needs to be upgraded", "the bathroom needs work", "the wall has a hole", "not enough bathrooms" and so much more.

It's not like I don't chime in with comments either.

I do put in a fair share of my personal opinions about the quality of the houses too.

But, at this point I wish we could just settle on something. Again, I know this takes time but I just get anxious.

So, we are going into the 5thweek and still haven't agreed on a house. My mom has her picks, my dad has his, and I have mine. And none of them overlap. Frankly, I don't get a "say" in what my parents chose since they will be purchasing the house. But, I get to live in it, my friends are the ones who will be paying them rent. So, I feel like my opinion matters. Whenever I ask questions or give input, they talk over me.

As if, I wasn't even there!

Yet, that is how the ball rolled. Wow, I'm borderline whining over here. It's not like I'm not grateful but, I wish I was valued as an adult helping in this situation.

Well thank you for coming to my "TED" talk! And reading about yet another annoying and trivial struggle of mine. I'll write again soon.

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