Now that I have my own family, I am beginning to hear the echos of all the things my mom used to say to me. Back then I was oblivious to what she used to say. As usual it went in one ear and out the other. I’m sure she was saying, ‘one day, you will know’. Those days have come, two-fold.
It’s so funny that every time I lecture Justice and Jasmine, I can image my mom looking over me and laughing because the things I am saying to them are things she used to say to me:
- Eat your food
- Pick up your clothes
- Put your toys away
- Don’t play with the ball in the house
Even though Justice and Jasmine are only 3, they still have a lot of teachings to hear. Assuming that I live to tell them, here are more things they should know that grandma used to tell me:
- Be with someone who will take care of you
- Pick your friends
- Don’t wait for your friends
- I’m your only mom
Just thinking about these things brings a tear to my eye. I should have listened and took these things more to heart. Sometimes being older and wiser sucks. It only took me 40+ years to really understand what she meant and of course now it’s too late for me to show my mom how much I really appreciate what she had to say. We never really conversed about life in general. Talking heart-to-heart was not one of our strong points. As a teen, I knew everything right? Wrong.
Being with someone who will take care of you. Wow, that seemed impossible in my teen years. No one that I knew of or was with wanted a long term relationship. If they did, I didn’t know how they would take care of me. But I misinterpreted that. What I realize now is that she meant be with someone will love you and take care of you. Someone who will be thoughtful, considerate, and helpful around the house. Since she was talking from experience, she didn’t want me to go through the same hardships in life and love that she went through. I remember now that she used to tell me things about my past relationships and she would basically give me the thumbs up or thumbs down on whether the girl was good enough for me. I guess should could see my happiness my eyes or not. Or maybe it was just her mother’s intuition.
Picking friends has not really been a problem for me. I have some good long-time friends. Good meaning, they are all decent people who never got in trouble with the law. They are good-hearted sincere people that come from good families and good backgrounds. They are thoughtful, helpful, and loving people. I am glad to call them friends.
Not waiting for friends. Back in the day that was my problem. I would wait for my friends to do things and I would kind of follow along. I guess my mom wanted me to be more independent and to follow my own path. While my friends were going through college and starting their lives, I was still deciding what I was going to do. This was the reason for my late start in life. I took it for granted that my mom’s generosity would save me. I couldn’t have been more wrong. She was right, I should have started my career sooner than later. She understood that being financially independent was and is important if you wanted to get anywhere in life.
I’m your only mom. Again she was right, she was my only mom. I should have shown more respect and love that she deserved. She basically did everything for me. Cooked, cleaned, and everything in-between. I acted like a guest instead of someone who should have been helping her, like a son I should have been. While I did help her the few times she asked, I should have done more when she didn’t ask. I was so involved in my own life that I didn’t appreciate the life she gave me. I was wrong once again. My mom was crying out to me and I put a deaf ear to her.
So here I am with my own family, possibly facing the same fate that my mom had. I have the opportunity to make things better or do nothing and repeat history. I know what I could be doing better based on past experiences. I just pray that I have the strength, patience, and will power to do better, to be better with my family. Sometimes I feel helpless and alone, but I have to keep going because no one else will do what I do for my kids. I just need to explain they ‘why’ in my actions better. Just saying, ‘don’t do this and don’t do that is not enough’. Tough love is one-sided.
I need to remember what Momma used to say and add the why….
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