Thanks Mom

Thanks Mom

My mother isn't my best friend. She's more than that.
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To my mom,

It's been almost a year since I started writing and every week you ask me, "Are you going to write something about me?" So here it is, dedicated to you and all the questions. P.s. thank you for being my mom, and not my best friend.

It is IMPOSSIBLE to put everything in words, and how much I'm actually thankful for you. And it's nearly impossible to tell you how much I appreciate you all in one article. First of all, thank you for never giving up--on our family or on me. From day one you have been my support system and my greatest fan. Thank you for supporting my love of helping people even when it put me in a bad spot myself. Thank you for letting me grow up to be a strong person. Thank you (and dad) for the countless money you spent on me going to college. (It's not too late to kick me out!!)



Thank you for the greatest gift you ever gave me--my siblings. Thank you for teaching me to be independent. Thank you for letting me find out on my own that the boy was no good for me. Thank you for being my shoulder to cry on when I finally realized it. Thank you for helping me out of situations when I couldn't get myself out of. Thank you for finally accepting I had a girlfriend and I was really happy. Thank you for always telling me you were proud of me. Thank you for letting me tell you all the bad things I have done (You knew I wasn't THAT innocent). Thank you for keeping my secrets, even when they got you into fights with dad. Thank you for sleeping in my room when I was a child. Thank you for teaching me that a little sunshine can do wonders for my mood. Thank you for being my role model. Because of you I know the kind of mother I want to be. Thank you for not killing me when I changed majors because I wanted to help people like I used to. Thank you for pretending to care about my drama just because you knew I needed to vent. Thank you for your intelligence, sense of humor, strength, empathy, love, and faith. Thank you for teaching me right from wrong. Thank you for disciplining me. Thank you for always making me stick to my word. Thank you for being the glue that holds our family together.Thank you for all the little, subtle ways you let me know I was loved.

Thank you for supporting my decision to write. Thank you for supporting my decision to move on from past experiences. Your support always made me feel loved. Thank you for all of our inside jokes. Thank you for being weird and silly with me. Thank you for all the laughs you have given me, especially the ones that bring tears to our eyes. Thank you, also, for all the tears. The hard times are what made us this close. Above all, thank you for finding the perfect balance of mother and friend. People always told me that having a mother as a best friend was the best thing ever, but I think a mother should come first before being a best friend.

Thank you Momma,

You're the best.

Cover Image Credit: Tiffany DeMarco

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What Rescuing a Dog Taught Me About My Future

She was a real pain to begin with, but I wouldn't give her up for the world now.

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My first dog came from a breeder to us when he was just a puppy. I was in third grade so we were both young together. I remember stepping off of the bus and seeing him curled up in my mom's arms. His breed, a Cavalier King Charles, is a highly sought after dog for their small size and beautiful markings. However, dog breeding can lead to medical complications down the line. Heart murmurs are very frequent as cavaliers get older. When he turned 9 years old, they were already detecting the beginning of a heart murmur in him. But my second dog didn't come to us in quite the same way.

Willow was about a year old. She was rescued from an abusive home where she had to fight for her food from many other dogs. This made her guard resources and distrustful of us. My mom and I begged the rest of our family for the ability to adopt her, and they finally agreed. Being not potty trained, we had to teach her with a lot of positive encouragement when she went pee in the right place (not our carpet). It took her a while to realize that we weren't going to take her food away and she gradually became less resource guarding. She started to trust my other dog more and play with him. A lot of the time, they even snuggle together now.

At the time, I was in my junior year of high school and still thinking about the idea of becoming a veterinarian. She helped me decide to go for it, and now I'm in college and getting ready to apply for veterinary school. Willow has become part of our family, and her funny and unique personality fit right in with us.

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