Here we are eating lunch in Venice, Italy on our dream vacation together!
1. Don't settle.
Whenever my mom talked to me about the future, this is what she's say. It typically pertained to marriage, but also to following my dreams. She was totally right, and I'm so glad I listened to her on this one.
2. You have great potential.
When I was 2 years old, my mother taught me to say, "I have great potential." I always knew that she believed in me, and part of that knowledge came from this simple phrase. She's been my #1 cheerleader from day 1, and fulfilling the potential she always saw in me has been a driving force in my life.
3. You're going to have to let that boy behind some of those closed doors you have.
Mom told me this about Andy. The moment she said it, it hit me like a ton of bricks and I started to cry. How did she know I even had closed doors in there? I did, and I've never regretted it.
4. Be nice to that one, he's a keeper.
She knew it the first time she met Andy, but meeting his parents sealed the deal. She knew I'd found my match. I did too by the way, but it was really nice to know that I had her approval.
5. It's all just a phase.
This was said in reference to my children. Every time I call my mom worried about some weird thing my kid is doing and whether or not they might need therapy, she gently reminds me that it is all just a phase. Remembering that this too shall pass in the infant stage was so amazingly comforting to me. It seriously helped me get through all those sleepless nights of nursing Annika every 2 hours for 45 minutes at a time. This is some of the BEST parenting advice I've every received.
6. Things disappear, collect memories instead.
Mom always told us that the goal is to have the best stories in the old folks' home. I've come to figure out that this not the way that everyone approaches life, and I'm so grateful that I learned this lesson from my mother early in my life.
7. Do what makes you happy in the long run.
Whenever I have a big decision to make, I always remember this pearl of wisdom from my mom. I think about how I will feel about the decision in 20 years. Whichever path will lead to regret down the road is the one I pass.
8. Better living through chemistry.
Mental illness runs in both sides of my family. About 12 years ago, mom started saying this mantra to me. It helps me to remember that mental illness is not something to be ashamed of, and that getting help to function isn't either. Sometimes I forget and get all serious and worried that I'm leaning too hard on a medical crutch for a socially/culturally exacerbated issue, and then I remember my mom's wise words. I'm POSITIVE that I can cope better and achieve more in part because of the amazing drugs that get me through the day.
9. The only thing you can put inside your ear is your elbow.
I only MOSTLY listen to this for myself, but I've definitely repeated this to my girls. It is hilarious to watch them try to do it.
10. Call your mother!
I do call her, all the time. Sometimes we even skype. :-)