Yes, I know we’re still a few days out from Mother’s Day, but one of the things my mother taught me was that if you’re not at least five minutes early, you’re late. Some lessons from mom are universal, learned at a young age and hold wisdom through the years. But many lessons from mom change as I change. As I gain different experiences and new perspectives, I can look at my mother, at our relationship, at what she tried to teach me, from different angles and through various lenses. What I’ve discovered is that the true value lies not in what she taught me, but in how I decided to interpret (and occasionally reinterpret) those lessons into my own life.
Even as the interpretations may change, the core values seem to remain the same. So what are some of the key lessons my mother taught me? So glad you asked.
- Education trumps everything.
- Reading opens doors. Sometimes those doors lead to amazing opportunities, other times they merely provide the opportunity to escape. It doesn’t matter the reason. Read. And then read some more.
- There is never a bad time for coffee.
- Dusting is overrated, unless company is coming over.
- A bit of righteous indignation never hurt anybody.
- It doesn’t matter how tall you are or how high you can jump — you won’t secure the rebound if you don’t box out.
- Be judicious with how often you say “yes” and to whom you say it.
- Learn to do everything for yourself.
- You are more than capable of being on your own, but your family is always there as your backstop.
- Even if you don’t think you have to go to the bathroom, try.
- It might still be pouring rain, but somewhere in the distance, the solid gray sky is getting brighter.
There are times when I’m pretty sure my mother has not fully understood my life choices and that’s OK. Because one of the most important things she taught me is that even if others don’t completely get me, I am strong enough to create my own path and find my unique sense of happiness. And happy, after all, is truly the only thing that matters.
What have you learned from your mother?