I Am Grateful For: Mothers

Allie Oniki, Copy Editor

When I was younger, I wanted to be two things: grass and a mom. Grass is a little out of the picture now, but because of my mom’s example, I’m still going strong on that wish. When I look back at the defining moments in my life, it’s no coincidence that my mom is in every one.

As a little kid, my mom let us completely destroy our house. My sister and I built a Barbie empire in the basement. She’d let us dig our hands into play dough and smash all the colors together. We painted pictures and made art museums. She’d go through with a camera, and “ooh” and “aah” at every sloppily thrown together piece of “art”. You name it: yogurt, Kool-aid, lemonade, ice cream, we’d dropped it on the floor, and she patiently cleaned it up. We’d all snuggle up before bedtime, and she’d read books to us before we went to sleep. We’d have to poke her repeatedly throughout the story, because her eyelids would slowly droop shut as she read. She wanted our house to be lived in and not looked at, and because of that, my childhood was sticky but so much fun.

When I went to elementary school, I started having to eat lunch at school. One of the lunch ladies was a witch with a spatula. I was horribly afraid of her, and asked my mom to come and sit in the lunchroom. I didn’t want her right next to me, because that would make me an uncool first grader. I just wanted her close enough that if the witch lunch lady started shoving her spatula down my throat, she could jump in and save me. She came every day and watched over me as I ate my grilled cheese. Looking back, she could have been doing so many other things besides watching her wimpy first grade daughter, but she was always there for me.

In middle school, I had some issues with wanting to be the coolest kid on the block. I hated school, and I was pretty close to hating myself. I remember driving with her one day and whining that I wasn’t cool because I didn’t have cool clothes, or cool hair, or cool shoes, or a cool house, or cool skills, and she turned to me and said, “Some people are ‘cool’ because they have good personalities.” Shots fired by Mom. I snapped out of my rut pretty quickly after that. Since then, she’s had to make me see outside myself quite a bit, and I am so much better for it.

Once I started high school, my mom became my best friend. I’ll come home late at night, and the entire house will be completely dark and still. She’ll be sitting there, waiting for me to tell her all about my day. She listens, and laughs or gives me advice at the times I need it. She supports me through every random thing I want to do. She tells me that I’m great even when I’m obviously failing at everything. She is my best friend.

I’ve always wanted to be like my mom. I find myself crossing my legs like her, laughing like her, throwing objects on the ground when I lose like her, tripping in public like her, and trying to be a little more selfless like her. This Thanksgiving, I am so grateful for the person she is, and the person she’s shaping me into.