some things I’ve learned from my Mom

08 May 2014

One of my favorite features at 320 Sycamore is the annual “Some Things I’ve Learned About Being a Mom.” Last year I wrote about being a Mom and here are the past articles – wonderful posts from some extraordinary women with different backgrounds and mothering styles. It’s perfect reading for Mother’s Day weekend!

Today, I’m going to share some things I’ve learned from my own Mom about being a Mom. Here name is Susan, I call her Shuze (don’t even know how that came to be) Right now, we are missing her – she is in Tahiti serving a church mission with my Dad for 18 months, but thank goodness for google hangouts!

mom dad temple

mom dad tahiti

She is the best mom. I want to be a mom like her and I’ve tried to think about what she did that makes her what I want to be. Here are some thoughts:

* a sense of humor! She can laugh – we love her laugh.  I remember her pouring orange juice on the cereal one morning and just starting to laugh so hard she couldn’t stop. I think about that some mornings when I want to cry when someone has spilled something AGAIN. Another time, we were on a bike ride and cut through the school parking lot. There was a big pole we went around but looked back just in time to see my mom looking the other way and she smacked right into it! She crashed on the ground and sat there laughing for a good 5 minutes. She also loved to hear about funny things that happened at school and would love to hear us do teacher impressions. I think that sense of humor got her through some crazy times with 7 kids.

* she was there after school. It was such a relief coming home – to put down the heavy backpack and have a snack and have someone ask about your day, even though I’m pretty sure I mostly said, “fine.” “nothing.” “good.” But when there was something exciting or sad that happened and I did feel like talking, she was there and that made all the difference. Or she could tell something was bothering me and asked the right questions.

She went on a yearly getaway with her parents and sisters and when she was gone, I dreaded coming home. It was quiet and lonely and everything was different without her there. One time, my youth leaders at church told us to try an experiment.

When you get home from school, hide Mom somewhere and see how long it takes for someone to notice. We hid her down in the laundry room and sure enough, it was 15 seconds before someone yelled, Mom! Where’s Mom?

* she loves being with her children. You can just tell she genuinely enjoys being around us, and we can feel that. She seems interested in everything we do and remembers the little things like the tests we are taking, and the special presentation on Wednesday, and that cold we had – is it better? She even broke her wrist when she was helping deliver papers on our newspaper route and slipped on the ice. A friend commented to me once that she had never seen parents who like being around their kids so much. Even in retirement when most are down-sizing and cheering that the kids are out of the house, they built a home for everyone to come home to.

* she takes the time for the individual. I remember a time in 1st grade when I was terrified of kidnappers. ( I think it was that awful Adam movie??) I couldn’t sleep, I was scared walking home from the bus. She would come lay by me at night and lightly rub my arm and back and sing to me until I fell asleep and try to get my mind off of it -- she could have easily said, you’ll be fine -- go to sleep! But she knew how big it was in my life, and so she made it a priority in hers.

Just this fall, we were on a picnic and my daughter couldn’t find her ipod, and I was frustrated (and secretly happy maybe?) but my mom could see that it was important to her and left the group to walk back with her and look. I just think that those little moments when you show that you care about something that means a lot to someone else really matter.

Oh, I love her so much and don’t know how I got such a wonderful mom, but am so grateful that I did. What are some things you learned from your Mom? I would love to hear.
Happy Mother’s Day!

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  1. Thank you for your post! Sometimes we get so caught up in the difficulties of mothering it is hard to see that we are making a difference. Especially when a child is making choices that we know are harmful. Thank you for your encouraging examples of wonderful mothering. I have a mother similar to yours and I can't imagine a life without a loving mother!
    Happy Mothers Day

  2. This is beautiful Melissa! You helped remind me of what I love about my own mom so very much. My mom is very much like yours. She LOVES being around her children and has always genuinely cared about us and our lives. It's incredible to me that your mother had SEVEN babies and still made time to make each of you feel special. She deserves a gold star! I have 3 little ones now, and am contemplating a fourth, but feel so wore out and wonder if I have the energy to keep up with it all! I'm pretty sure I will have another one, but just working up the guts to push myself harder than ever before! I ABSOLUTELY love your blog and all you have to write about! Thank you! xo Amber

  3. Beautiful post! We shoulg all strive to be caring mums like yours!

  4. Your mom is so wonderful Melissa. I loved reading this! I'm sure they are enjoying their mission. :) Thanks for including my article, and may you have a very Happy Mother's Day!

  5. Thank you for posting this! I want so, so much to be an excellent mother to my two precious kids and I worry every day that I'm failing in them in some way. I'm inspired by your mom and how much she was fully present - and *laughing* - in your life. She sounds like a wonderful woman!

  6. Thanks for this post, it makes me realize that even the small things can make a big difference!
    And by the way, our next door neighbors are in Tahiti as temple president and matron for 2 more years, I bet they've met your parents! (their last name is Tefan)

  7. Oh my goodness I love your post. I try to be the mom that doesn't get uptight over every little thing and thankfully my son makes me laugh more than he frustrates me. I have come to realize that life is just too short and to be thankful for the small things. I try to find the humor in things, but know when I need to be serious as well. I love my mom to pieces, but the one thing I always told myself is I would raise my child totally different than how I was raised. So far, I parent my son very different than they way I was parented and it seems to be working well. Hope you have a wonderful Mother's Day.

  8. What a sweet post about your mom! I love how you remember her laughing at things...things I should laugh at too...what a admirable woman. Thanks for sharing. : )

  9. I love this tribute to your mom. We need to give our moms good reports more often. Mothers Day is a good reason to articulate it to other people.

  10. She seems like a wonderful mother! All of the qualities you described are things I want to work on! Thanks to you and your mom for the inspiration!


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