My Mom has always been a huge source of motivation behind everything I do. She’s my biggest supporter, my biggest believer and she always comes to me with rationality, something I sometimes leave behind. Life has certainly dealt her many obstacles but she doesn’t see them as such. She sees them as challenges she is going to overcome. This woman raised me and my two sibling single handily and has significantly shaped the woman I am today because of her teachings along the way. Of course there are a million and one things she has taught me, but I thought I would share the first ten I thought of!
1. Positivity is the answer to all things:
You know those kind of people who walk into the store to grab their morning coffee or in my Mom’s case, a diet coke, and they are beaming with glow and their smiles are wide? That’s my Mom. Beyond her being a morning person, she doesn’t believe there is any point in time where someone or something should shake your life so badly that you can’t be in a positive state of mind. She believes these moments are just moments and tomorrow it’s going to feel small in importance. Move on, there are far better things you can be doing or focusing on. A frown takes more muscles than a smile. Gosh, we heard that over and over again as kids! The quote “positive thoughts, positive results” was created after this woman I swear!
2. There is always someone worst off than you
My mom was tragically hit by a drunk driver and then ran over by the same drunk driver when she was 20 years old. That sentence alone, I can’t comprehend. Things were certainly way different then in terms of punishment to the drunk driver and everything, but these few seconds created mountains of obstacles for my mom to overcome in the next year and she continues to combat them today. She was not expected to live, not expected to walk again and doctors did not think she was going to make it. Long story short, my mom was in excellent physical shape and she was so determined to live her life and walk and be active again that she fought herself for the next year and a half to make it happen. When she was lying in the hospital bed one day, she had made a comment about how this all happened and look at her and my Grandad had said to her, “no no Gynni, there is always someone worst off than you”. I know he had told her about another woman in the hospital next door to her room whose health was ending. My mom always told us kids that growing up and instilled it into us that we have so much to be grateful for.
3. Sometimes you keep on going not because you want to but because you have no other choice
One of the coolest things I have noticed about becoming older and creating a life with Pat, is that I have such a different outlook on our parents. I feel we are entering that point of time where they are becoming our best friends and more of advisers than teachers. My mom has always been one of my best friends but it’s amazing how our relationship has shifted over these last few years of being out of school. It’s one of those things where I no longer feel I need to ask for permission on something, but rather share my plans and ask for support. My mom raised the three of us on her own. I look back and I’m like how did you do it. How did you afford it? How did we have no idea these hardships she was facing? My mom always replied that sometimes you keep on going not because you want to or because you feel like it, but because you have no other choice. She had three little kids looking at her for dependency and to her there was not a choice, there was a clear path to rise us and keep on moving through life. Her strength is beyond the words I could find to describe.
4. God has a plan, we may not understand it, but trust in Him.
Jeremiah 29:11 is my favorite bible verse. “For I know the plans I have for you”, declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future”. All of us has experience heartache, rage from something or someone being taken from us. A moment of intense aggression because you feel someone wasn’t treated right. You watch the news and you are taken through almost every emotion because we live in a world we could never possibly understand. My Grandma was taken from us out of a mistake from a doctor, it was by far the most terrible experience. You can’t help but think why did God do this? Why are there children who are taken by sickness? They never even had a chance. Mom raised us kids Christian and while we want these answers, sometimes we simply don’t get them. Faith is what comes in play, trust in the Lord with all of your might.
5. Speak up & always stand for what you believe in
This is huge with my Mom. One, she simply isn’t a quiet person in general, but two, “use that voice God gave you” was a common motto in our house. I can’t tell you how many times I was sent to the principal’s office or the teacher had to call home because I was standing up to another kid. I was mostly defending my twin sister who has a physical disability and anyone that was rude to hear had to deal with me! My mom never got mad if I felt I was defending someone or doing something positive for someone else. You stand for nothing, you fall for anything.
6. Help those who are in need
My mom always says, you never know when you’ll need something from someone else. And while this isn’t the only reason to help others, thinking you’ll get a return, it makes me think how human we are. Here one day, gone the next. Life is too short to walk in a straight line and not take in your surroundings. People are struggling, people are hungry, people are incredibly successful. People are the root of what life is. Help your neighbors as they are your brothers and sisters. One day, maybe they will return the favor and maybe they will not. Regardless you did a positive thing for someone.
7. Your dog is your dog, you are the owner, it listens to you
These next two are a bit more light hearted. Growing up we always had one or two Airedale Terriers. Have you heard of this breed? Here is the Google image page for you! Our dogs stayed in the yard because my mom trained them to, could walk off leash in the neighborhood, sat when us kids would climb on them or pull on their ears when we were babies. The whole nine yards, our dogs were awesome. Well, I may have been a bit naive thinking all dogs are like this but now I understand my mom is an amazing dog trainer. When Pat and I got Ruby, my mom told me “your dog is your dog, you are the owner, it listens to you”. She was like, you need to be 110% committed in training Ruby so that she can be the dog you want her to be and you can take her wherever you want and not have to worry about anything. I am so happy I listened to her because some of my friend’s dogs are out of control! Mom loves Ruby btw!
8. “Just relax Brit”
This one has a big influence from my stepdad who is an incredible man. I am so thankful God had him enter into our lives about ten years ago! He always tells my mom to relax because she can’t sit down either, but my mom ends up telling me this more often than not. I have fitness goals, blog goals, travel goals, etc. and sometimes I feel like I can’t shut my mind off of anything. Mom is always there to tell me to just relax. I think we all need to remember that, sometimes it’s okay to take two hours and read a book by the pool and shut the world out. If you’re working really hard, you deserve a break.
9. Surround yourself with amazing people who will only support you and be with you
My parents have such a strong group of friends in our hometown. They go bowling and then hit up the karaoke bar every other Friday night! Pat and I swear my parents have more of a social life than we do! Haha! But these friends of theirs are amazing. To witness their support and pure happiness they have towards each other is really an incredible thing. My mom has always told us quality over quantity. You want people who want to build you up, support you and be there when you need them. In turn, you need to do the same for them.
10. Never stop dreaming, chase after everything you want
I am certainly a dreamer. I have this thought out whimsical plan of my life, all the places I will go, all the things I will accomplish and to be honest, I don’t see anything wrong with this! Walt Disney, people, think about it! Hahah! I feel very fortunate to have been raised by someone who encourages this. Life is short and you can have anything you want, you just have to work really hard. Make dreams come reality through dedication, commitment and through hard work.
I hope you can take some of these points away with you! Aren’t moms just amazing? I know my Mom will read this, so I love you Mom. Thank you for everything you do! Thanks for taking these photos because I know you hate having your picture taken! (Where did I come from?! LOL)
Thank you for stopping by,
xx, Brittany Ann