Thursday, April 26, 2012

Why My Mom Still Matters

As a new mom, I find myself dreading the day that my daughter suddenly doesn't need me anymore. I know it will come, as that's ultimately the point of parenthood, and of course I will be proud of her to be on her own. I certainly once thought I didn't need my mom anymore, and I was probably too cavalier in the way I let her know. But as I've started my own journey of parenthood, I've come to realize that even if I don't need my mom, she still matters a tremendous amount in my life.

My mom truly cares how I'm doing.

How many times each day are you asked, "How are you?" Probably more than you can count. And how many times does the person asking the question really want to find out the answer? Probably less than you'd care to know. My mom, on the other hand, truly cares to know about my day. We have daily chats on the phone during which she rejoices in my successes, feels pain over my sorrows, and helps me troubleshoot my challenges. The empathy of a mother cannot be matched.

My mom knows the real me.

My mom knows the person I am and always have been. She can tell just by a look on my face or the sound of my voice how I'm feeling. She knows what I really mean to say, even when I don't express it. She understands why I say or do certain things, what aspects of my personality are inborn, and perhaps most importantly, how I've grown. The best part is that despite all this knowledge of the real me, she loves me anyway. In a world that sometimes seems to require me to be anything but myself, the permission to be authentic with my mom keeps me grounded.

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