In my final series of Happy Mother’s Day posts, I hope these just remind you to love these amazing women! Even our grown children need support, but not smothering.
I May Be All Grown Up, Mom, But You’re Still My #1 Gal
You’re the first person I come to when something is wrong, and you’re the first person I want to tell when something amazing happens.
Next time you visit me in New York, you’ll see that I have a few handwritten quotations tacked to the wall above my desk.
One reads, “You shouldn’t be that worried about it.”
The other: “Let yourself have fun.”
These simple missives aren’t taken from famous philosophers, celebrity tweets, fitness “influencers” on Instagram or even Taylor Swift Lyrics.
They’re from you.
They’re from the mouth of a mother of four, a palliative care nurse from rural Pennsylvania. While I doubt you even remember saying these things to me, they mean everything to me now.
About five years ago, when I came clean to you about the near-constant and occasionally crippling anxiety I was facing, you pointed out that my unease and inability to calm it wasn’t my fault — nor was it something I could easily control on my own. So I sought out help. Now, I keep a snippet of our conversation at my desk when my over-the-top thoughts and misgivings start to get out of control (which, as you know, happens frequently).
Then, about five months ago, when I was visiting for the holidays, we had one of our obligatory late-night, wine-fueled, deeply personal conversations. This one centered around how panicky I had become about dating and intimacy — how I was overthinking everything and essentially contemplating myself out of opportunities to find love (or at least “like”).
The next evening, when I was on my way out the door for a date, you told me to let myself have fun. It ended up being one of the best evenings I’d had in quite some time.
These are just two examples of the thousands of “little things” you’ve done for me, your “sensitive child,” in the past 29 years that are, to me, actually very big things. I want you to know that I’m incredibly thankful for and appreciative of every single one of them.
You’re constantly on the lookout for me, in a way that goes above and beyond anything I could ever expect or come close to deserving. Any time I receive an unexpected Amazon package, an email or a random Facebook message from you, I know it’s going to be something meant to help me out or brighten my day — something that softly suggests a method or practice that might help me live a happier and healthier life. You never seem to run out of energy or hope, and that helps me sustain my resolve.
In everything I’ve ever done or attempted, you have been extremely encouraging and supportive. You’re the first person I come to when something is wrong — when I’m distraught, despondent or just straight-up lost — and you’re the first person I want to tell when something amazing happens. (Like when I kissed that woman I went out with that night.)
Thank you so very much, Mom, for always going above and beyond for all your children, for sacrificing so much of yourself to improve the lives of those around you — and for doing so tirelessly.
I do not say this with any exaggeration whatsoever: You are the greatest Mom a kid could ever hope for. I should tell you this more often.
I love you very much, and I hope you have the happiest Mother’s Day.
Scott Muska is a writer living in Brooklyn. His work has appeared on Mashable, Cosmopolitan.com and Glamour.com, among other national outlets.
This is part of a special series, “Thank You, Mom,” highlighting letters of gratitude from celebrities and notable writers leading up to Mother’s Day. To view the full collection, which will be added to throughout the month of May, go here.
~Love, Laura (mom and soon to be grandmother)!