Every year Mother’s Day, and my Mom’s birthday fall either on the same day or a few days apart. It’s a great opportunity to celebrate the greatest person I know who just also happens to be my Mum.
For those of you that read my blog, or know me, you know what an impact my Mum has had on my life. My Mum doesn’t want any kind of a fuss for her birthday, and in fact is off somewhere cruising the Bahamas right now with my Dad for her birthday, which works out just fine, because she’d probably be mortified that I’d be drawing any kind of attention to her.
For a quick overview for those that don’t know; my Mum has had MS since I was 6. She was using a cane by the time I was 10, was using a walker around when I was 13, and started using a wheelchair when I was 20.
When I was back home in Canada, I had the pleasure of taking her to her pool class a couple of times a week, and monitored her, and she did three laps around our garden every day with her walker, and electrodes that she puts on her legs to stimulate her muscles.
Her sisters took her to a healing conference this week, and I got a super excited email from my Dad that said she walked from one side of a room to the other, with no electrodes or a walker, just with 2 ladies helping her. In my Dad’s words she said “she’s praying for more improvement before she turns 60.”
So in honour of my Mum and her 60th bday, I would like to take this opportunity to say the 10 valuable things my Mum has taught me.
- YOU HAVE CONTROL OVER HOW YOU THINK ABOUT ANY SITUATION
My Mum is a perfect example, that no matter what life hands you, you always have control over what you think about it. She gets up out of bed every morning with a smile on her face, and a positive attitude, as she struggles to get dressed and get herself into her wheelchair, inspiring pretty much anyone that comes in her path.
2. NEVER TAKE YOUR HEALTH FOR GRANTED
Although it was very hard as a kid watching my Mum’s health being taken from her, it gave me a valuable lesson that has led me to all corners of the Earth, starting when I was 15 and visited my friend in Peru after saving up all my newspaper delivery money; you never know how long you will have your health for. Do everything that you want to do, and don’t ever for a moment take your health for granted.
3. WHEN THINGS SUCK, JUST LAUGH
The best example I have of this, was one day I heard my Mum yelling from the other side of the house. I ran to the other side of the house in a panic, to find her lying upside down, as her wheelchair tipped when she forgot to put her backstops on. As I tried to pick her up (failing miserably), we just started laughing, and laughing and laughing. A good lesson that there can be humour found in any situation, and it always serves you best, to find it.
4. SOMEBODY ALWAYS HAS IT WORSE
I can’t tell you the number of times that my Mum has said to me, you know what I heard about so and so, its just so sad, we are just so lucky for what we have. She says this to me, earnestly to me from her wheelchair. I always marvel that this lady, from her wheelchair can see all that she has been blessed with.
5. DETERMINATION CAN OVERCOME ANYTHING
When I was home last month, I was on guard duty, watching my Mum do her 3 daily laps around the garden. She only made it around once, and was completely pissed off at herself, as her legs were not cooperating with her. I helped her back into her wheelchair and went about my day. A few hours later, she called me to come out and watch her again. She made it around the garden 3 times, and came in the house with a big smile on her face.
6. INTEGRITY IS EVERYTHING
My Mum has taught me that it’s the integrity and effort that you go after anything that matters the most, not what you accomplish. Whether or not my Mum ever gets healed, there is no greater winner in the world.
7. KINDNESS AND COMPASSION IS EVERYTHING
My Mum is one of the sweetest people I have ever met in my life. The abundance of friends that she has, speaks volumes to this characteristic about her. She’s also taught me how important it is to always be aware of how someone might be struggling with something and how easy it is to make someone’s day by just going out of my way to be considerate and show that I care.
8. NEVER GIVE UP HOPE
My Mum never ceases to amaze me with the belief that she has that one day, she will be healed. She has prayed diligently since I was a kid, and continues to believe, with the same faith that I remember from when I was a little kid.
9. UNCONDITIONAL SUPPORT AND BELIEF IS THE GREATEST GIFT YOU CAN GIVE SOMEONE
The biggest characteristic I remember from growing up with my Mum is my Mum’s unconditional support. Whether it was telling me how fantastic I was at my soccer game, even though I knew I sucked, or telling me when I was a fat kid that I wasn’t, my Mum always reassured me, every time I came at her with some negative thought about myself, that it wasn’t true. Even though I knew she was full of crap half the time. It always planted the little seed in my head that maybe she was right, and I was just as great as she always would tell me I was.
10. YOU CAN DO ANYTHING
Seeing how my Mum has handled her illness has planted the belief that anything is possible into the depth of my soul. She’s taught me to never give up, always believe anything is possible, and spend time not focusing on what you don’t have, but going about living your life grateful with everything you’ve been given.
HAPPY 60th BIRTHDAY and HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY TO THE MOST FANTASTIC LADY I KNOW