Friday, May 6, 2011

My Mother's Advice

My mother and I didn’t get along very well.  Ever.  Granted, I was what you might call a difficult teenager, but even as a seemingly well-adjusted and responsible adult, we just rarely saw eye to eye.  So with Mother’s Day approaching, I have been trying to put a positive spin on our relationship.  
 
My mother was a Nurse.  One day, when I was struggling in my first year of college, I went with her to pick up her paycheck.  She got in the car and opened it, smiled and handed it to me to see.  I don’t remember the amount, but for 1982, it was, in my opinion, enormous.  “You know what that means?” she said to me.  “It means that no matter what happens, I can always take care of myself.”

Well, that wasn’t necessarily true.  Eventually, at an age younger than I am now, she couldn’t take care of herself anymore.  But, I do understand what she was trying to say.  Get an education.  Have some way to support yourself and those that depend on you.  Things may not always turn out the way you expect, but at least try to be prepared.  And I did just that.  Prepared myself.  Just in case.

Over the course of my adult life, “just in case” has been here many, many times and I am thankful that I have been able, both mentally and physically, to handle my own business.  I may not always be able to do the job I do now, so I continue to go to school to prepare for what might happen next.  If someday I can’t walk, maybe I will still be able to type.  If someday I can’t type, maybe I will still be able to talk.  You never know.  But I try to be prepared.  And it is in that preparation of self that I find a sense of security, a sense of self-worth and a sense of accomplishment that I always felt missing in my younger days.
 
Thanks, Mom.  That was one excellent piece of advice.

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