An Open Letter to My Mom

Dear Mom,

I know that May snuck up on us this year; Mother’s Day came quicker than I expected. As I keep getting older, Mother’s Day gains a new meaning for me. Now that I’m in college, I don’t get to spend as much time with you, due to the fact that I’m not living at home anymore. In a weird way, this has made me appreciate you more than ever. I realize the things that I didn’t notice as a teen.

There was always someone there for me, and I took that for granted. There was someone to do my laundry when I didn’t feel like it, or to make dinner even though you were probably more tired than I was. There were so many times when even though I was probably wrong, you stood by my side. You showed me unconditional love, even when it wasn’t easy.

I remember being in my early teens and complaining about just about everything. Thankfully, I mostly grew out of that phase. You helped me realize at a young age that family was everything. You taught me that you do anything for your family, because you love them even when you hate them.

You taught me what self-sufficiency was. Through that, you made me a functioning adult, which in itself is kind of a miracle. I don’t wish I could say that my mom packed my lunch until I was 18 years old because it taught me that lunch actually doesn’t make itself. Okay, well maybe you tried to make them for a while, but it turned out peanut butter sandwiches weren’t my thing, and you were sick of them ending up in the garbage.

One of the strongest qualities that you taught me was that it’s okay to cry. Being vulnerable doesn’t make you weak, it makes you strong. If other people are mocking your ability to be vulnerable, they are the weak ones. Cry if you need to because holding things in will only make you cry that ugly sob, and no one wants the ugly sob. 

You taught me how to love the skin I was born with. You taught me that I misinterpreted that curly hair doesn’t need to be brushed, and I just looked homeless. I’m not kidding, I actually looked like Anne Hathaway (pre-princess) in The Princess Diaries.

Image source: Author

You always knew the toxic people in my life before I could even begin to spot them. You were not afraid to say no when you didn’t trust someone, which at the time disappointed me. I mean, at 14, these things sound like the biggest deal of your life. Sometimes, you had to prioritize being my parent over being “my friend”, and I understand the bigger picture now. I can’t thank you enough for helping me see the toxic people in my life. They’re not necessarily bad people, they’re just not compatible with me.

I just want to take this Mother’s Day to say that I love you, Mom. Thank you for being the most wonderful human being and helping me grow into my skin. Thank you for making me a functional adult that brushes her hair and thank you for putting up with all of my teenage years. Thank you for being my very best friend and thank you for trusting me to be yours. Mothers really are the best. 

Love,

Your daughter, Abby