On this Mother’s Day, I want to pay tribute to my mom. We had some rough patches when I was growing up – what mother and daughter don’t? But I really learned to appreciate my mom once I became a mom. Today I am going to share with you a few of the things my mother taught me.
First, my mother taught me not to be ashamed of my voice. I come from a long line of choir directors and organists. My mom directed the choirs that I sang in at church when I was growing up. In fact, the members of my family were required to sing whether we wanted to or not.
I have a good voice, I sing in tune, and I always sang loud. Other kids made fun of me for singing loud, but my mom (the director) said I was fine. She encouraged me to share my voice with the world by giving me solos. Mom also encouraged me to share my opinions, my organization, and my sense of justice with the people around me. It was another way of teaching me to use my voice.
Second, my mother taught me that women can be leaders in the church. I think Mom would have been a clergyperson if women did that back in the day. Instead, she led in other ways, serving on committees in the local church, the District, and the Conference. She was elected to General Conference several times. She was the first woman to chair the Conference Program Committee.
When I started discerning my call, my mom encouraged me. She made sure I got to meetings before I was old enough to drive. Whether I chaired a committee or preached, she let me know how proud she was. Mom encouraged me in all my endeavors. She still sits front row center when I get to preach.
Third, my mother taught me how to be up for any adventure. To this day, we all pile in the car for adventures: to see what we can see or what we can learn. Mom is always ready to try something new. We have laughed several times over her insistence on trying spicy foods. Her eyes water and her mouth gets round, but she still tries at least a taste. I think being an Indians fan feeds this sense of adventure. Whether they win or lose, she roots for her team.
Fourth, my mother taught me how to make things happen. When I was in college and wanted to dye Easter eggs she bought the stuff and we did it together. When I wanted to audition for the American Youth Symphony, my mom figured out how to pay for it. She never told me an idea or desire is stupid or too expensive. Instead, she figures out a way to make dreams a reality, whether they are big dreams or small ones. Because of this, I believe we can always find a way to do something.
These are just a few of the things my mother taught me. I am so thankful to have her around, because I am still learning from her every day.
How about you? What did your mother teach you?