By Piper Blake
Web Content Contributor
March is National Women’s History Month and I want to show appreciation for the most influential woman in my life. Not everyone has the closest relationship with their mom, but for me I can honestly say she is my best friend. She is the one who instilled in me just what being an independent woman should look like. She is my role model, my secret keeper, my stress reliever, my supporter, and I will be forever grateful for her.
I have always talked to my parents about everything going on in my life due to the openness of our relationship. However, a girl’s mom is the one she can go to for all the growing pains of becoming a woman. From mean girls at school to first love, she has seen and heard it all. We don’t always see eye to eye, though. She knows I’m not perfect and calls me out when she thinks I am in the wrong, but she always reassures me she still loves me. I can always go to her when I need advice or just a shoulder to cry on. Having this relationship with her has given me a soft place to fall when things in life gets rough. I probably call her too much, but I know it always helps us to talk to each other about what’s going on in our day.
My mom and I are always being told by people, “There is no way you aren’t mother and daughter,” due to our resemblance. This has always been something that I have heard but just shrugged off because I knew it was true. Now, I see it as one of the greatest compliments because it’s not just in our looks. People have always respected my mom because of the way she respects herself and always holds her head up high. Now being away from her in college I have realized we are more alike than I thought. She is the hardest worker I know and now I have taken on that trait also. I have been able to show my parents that they have raised me with the same independence and drive they hoped to place in me. I still haven’t grown into being as confident as she is due to being young and still trying to find myself, but that is one of my goals.
She is a feminist role model for me because even in my parents vows my mom wouldn’t say “to obey.” She didn’t believe that a wife must obey her husband to be in a happy marriage. It obviously didn’t hurt anything because they just celebrated their 28th wedding anniversary and are still best friends. She’s also the definition of strong. She can stand up for herself in any situation and it makes me so proud to be her daughter. Her favorite saying is, “Kill them with a smile so they never know what you are thinking.” I still haven’t fully grasped this skill, but I’m working on it. She has taught me what it means to stay respectful in all situations. Without her guidance I have no idea where I would be. Parents influence your paths in life, but when they do it right you never want to stray too far from them.
The most important things she has taught me in life are staying humble and persevering through trials. When I tore my ACL before my senior season of volleyball, I was devastated. I felt like all my dreams had been ripped away from me at the seams. It wasn’t easy for me to accept this loss of something I loved. However, I never considered my mom having to see her daughter suffer like this. I was filled with so much anger that I never thought how she was feeling about the situation. We fought a lot during this time of transition.
One day after a meltdown of high emotions, she had to open my eyes to what it means to give up something for a greater future. When my parents were trying to have me, my mom was warned of the possibility of going blind when giving birth. Even though she was monitored all throughout her pregnancy, she still was risking her own health to have me. This would have caused a huge disruption in her day to day life, but she knew I would be worth the risk. I had no idea that this struggle of hers could have been related to my own, but it made me think of the bigger picture. She didn’t end up going blind and I was able to recover quickly, and I am so thankful for these victories. A lesson she has always repeated to me is that “things happen for a reason” and I live by this today. After my recovery I realized I was able to focus so much more time on other passions of mine like my school and my photography. This has led me to where I am today, and I don’t think I would be as successful today if I hadn’t gone through that experience.
I don’t know what I would do without my mom. The lessons taught by a mother will last forever and I hope to be at least half the mom she is one day. National Women’s Day is March 8 and if your mom is the most influential woman in your life, show appreciation for her then– and every day. It will mean the world to her.
Photo by Piper Blake.