An Open Letter to My Mom On Mother's Day

Today the internet is filled with posts proclaiming that they have the best mother. Perhaps the most beautiful, the funniest, the smartest, the most caring mother in the entire world. I’m not here to compete with anyone. In fact, I’m happy that so many people are as supported and filled with love for their mommas as I am.

momma woz

My mother is fantastic. Take every word that I used in the previous paragraph and you’ve got my mother. I mean, just look at that cutie in that Icelandic headband!

I thought instead of buying my mom another useless gift off Groupon like a wine bottle shaped umbrella (been there, done that), I’d share a few stories about my mom that highlights just how perfect of a mother she is, even when she isn’t.

My mom loves with every ounce of herself.

In seventh grade, I had to get eight teeth pulled. Everything went smoothly: I went to sleep and woke up with the appropriate teeth gone. My mom came in to watch me wake up. She took one look at me, with my mouth full of gauze and chipmunk cheeks, and she hit the floor. Passed out cold.

We both ended up in the waiting room while she sipped OJ to make sure she could drive us home.

Then in high school, I got elbowed in the face during a soccer game. My Mom, Dad and I went to the hospital together to get me some stitches. She was totally fine on the way in, as I sat dripping blood in the backseat. She was totally fine while I had a breakdown over the thought of getting stitches. And then when they tried to show her my stitched-up face, she hit the floor again.

While I got stitches, my mom got fed chocolate.

Mom loves me so much she can’t stand to see me hurt. Literally.

My mom offers unwavering support.

If you check out our Meet Us page, my mom gets a special shout-out. She’s been absurdly supportive of me even before this blog was worth reading. She read those posts, you know the ones that are terrible and should remain in the dregs of the internet. And even before that, she’s read every shitty story I’ve written, admired every picture I’ve drawn and listened to every song I learned on the clarinet. She even let a disproportionate piggy bank that I made sit on the mantel for years.

When we had our intern run a social media campaign, my mom entered several times. I’m relatively convinced she created an Instagram account just so she could participate. Her entire feed was essentially our contest (she unfortunately didn't win).

And then when Richmond Brunch Weekend came around this year, she cooked herself brunch that weekend (pancakes and bacon). Then she sent in her equivalent donation (she valued her pancakes at $50 if that's a hint at her donation amount). And she even posted about it on Instagram. #CoolMom

mothers day open letter

On top of that, she legitimately thought that we should have a part of the weekend include a mail-in photo option to include out-of-towners. While I love and appreciate her enthusiasm, that’s sounds like an idea that only a mother would support.

Mom’s up with the technology, too.

It breaks my heart that my mom is so far away. While my teenage years she probably hated me (I would glare at her for making me a full breakfast every morning because I hated being awake so early), we’ve gotten much closer over the years.

I harass her at least once a week during lunch. When I call around noon, she knows it’s time for my "lake walk," which typically includes chatting about inane parts of our day.

facetime with mom

However, mom’s totally down to figure out new ways to connect. Sometimes we FaceTime and I can even spend quality time with her chin. Plus, she’s now figured out emojis, so every text now seems to have some type of symbol. And when she can’t find an appropriate one, she’ll type out what emoji she would ideally use in that situation.

But most of all, my mom’s tough.

Growing up, I knew I could work my dad over. If I reeeeeally wanted something, he would cave. My mom, though, not so much.

My sister once had the stomach bug, which meant almost inevitably I would end up with it, too, since we shared a room.

I was feeling less than 100% one day, but mom sent me into school anyway. It hit during Civics class. We had a sub who thought I was trying to get out of class, so she wasn’t giving me a pass. I puked right next to her desk in front on the entire class (with enough self-control to do it in a trash can). I then wandered around the school looking for the nurse since I couldn’t go home without her sign-off and she wasn’t in her office. I puked in a few more trashcans spread out across the school and finally got the nurse to call home.

When my mom answers the phone, the nurse says, “I have your daughter here, and she needs to go home.” And my mom responds with, “Which one?” Because that woman sent both of her daughters into school since neither of us were actively sick. She’s a strong woman, who taught me to tough it out and be scrappy.

I’ve got another fun puking-in-church story that I’ll save for another day, because one puke story is probably enough when I’m talking about how great my mom is.

But what I admire most about my mom can be summed up in one of my absolute favorite quotes:

“Courage is grace under pressure.”

Growing up, I had a picturesque life. Nothing harmed me. My parents provided for me. I was so deeply loved and cared for and sheltered from essentially everything negative. If you asked kid Sara, there were no hardships.

But that’s because my mom was strong. She didn’t let things affect me. And it’s something I didn’t appreciate until recently. The past couple years have challenged our family, and my mom was gracefully resilient every step of the way. She had every reason to break down, yet she was the spine of our family.

She can’t always protect me from life anymore, but she’s raised me to be strong. To demand excellence. To not settle. To fight when I deserve more. To make logical decisions. To let things rolls. To laugh. To value relationships. To be loyal. To be myself.

You might think your mom is the best, but my mom is my favorite. Of all the moms in the world, I’m happy I ended up with you, Mom. I love you!

mom and sara