Learning To Appreciate My Mother For Who She Is
A common joke that I have with two of my sisters is “I wish I had the same Mom that you have.” Which is crazy, because we all have the same mother and father and grew up in the same exact household. However, with three sisters, two of them were Mama’s Girls and the rest of us were Daddy’s Girls, and some seemed to be favored by their parent of choice more than others.
For years, there was a rift between me and my mother. We just seemed to bump heads, particularly in my high school years. As much as I love my mother, she can be a little hard to handle sometimes, but in all honesty, so was I. Our arguments were so frequent that in high school I just preempted every single thing that she was going to say to me with an attitude, because I just knew that was where it was going to head anyway, so let’s cut out the middle.
During the summer, before I head off to college I was complaining to one of my best friends about how unfair I felt my mother was, and just how much she “got on my nerves.” My normally talkative friend was quiet. I asked her what was wrong and she told me that the anniversary of her mother’s death was approaching, and sometimes she wished that her mother was still alive. I felt horrible. Here I was complaining about my mother, when my friend, and millions of people out there have lost their mothers, and would love to have a mother to just argue with. So, I tried to reshape my relationship with my mother, keeping what my friend said in mind. And… it worked, for the most part, but as I was in college, I enjoyed the distance. I truly did.
Our relationship was okay, but there were still hurt feelings between the two of us that have yet to be addressed. It wasn’t until I became pregnant and then a mother that I had to let any and all bitterness toward my mother go. While I was pregnant, I was working from home and was alone a lot, my mother was constantly coming to visit, and it helped me so much. If I needed anything, she was there to get it for me, and when I went into false labor, four separate times, she drove all the way to my hospital, in multiple feet of snow (I gave birth in January, prime “screw you” winter month) and sat in the hospital with me and my husband for hours while the doctor let me know that what I thought was my water breaking (TMI moment approaching) was actually me peeing on myself. She never complained, she sat and patiently waited, and she waited the entire 24 hours when I actually had gone into labor, and was shipped of to have a C-section.
My appreciation grew even more once I had a child and realized what parents go through. Within these two short years of my daughter’s life, when she was sick, I was up with her. When her teeth were coming in and she was waking up in the middle of the night, I was there. I rocked her, and I comforted her. There were times that I was extremely sick myself, but as a mother, you put yourself to the side to tend to your child, and I realized that my mother had done that with me for years. The nights that I was sick and vomiting, she was always there. The times that she spent her time making dinner, and as the picky eater I was/am, told her that I didn’t want to eat it and she instead made me a peanut butter and strawberry jam sandwich, and never complained about it.
My mother might not have always been perfect, but tried her best in everything when it came to me and my sisters. She proved her weight in gold to me, and even if she might get to me sometimes, I appreciate every moment that we have together, because raising children is hard, especially a child like me. I might not always understand or like certain things that she does or says, but I will always appreciate her for the great mother that she always strove be.