Anytime someone first meets my mom they tell me, “Your mom is so cool!” She has been known to throw the ‘F’ bomb around, laugh at inappropriate jokes other parents would find vulgar and has an endless amount of stories to share that make her sound interesting. Hang gliding? Mom did that and then threw up her chocolate chip pancakes once she landed. She partied hard, saw every famous rock musician in concert when they were still skinny and never ask her if she has been in a fight (she has, she won obviously).
My mom is my travel buddy. She’s also my best friend and a pain in my ass. She gives me unsolicited advice that I never want to hear, doesn’t love my curly hair and eats all of my snacks. In honor of mother’s day I thought I’d share some of her advice she has given me over the years.
NEVER DATE A LOSER
Imagine someone that is barely 5’1 shouting this at you while wildly throwing her hands in the air. Ah, never date a loser is her number one piece of advice. I haven’t dated losers but I’ve dated plenty of guys with issues. “His issues aren’t your issues,” she reminds me again and again.
In her eyes a loser is someone who doesn’t have a job, can barely hold one down or doesn’t want to work period.
INVEST IN YOUR CLOTHES, APPLIANCES AND OTHER KEY PRODUCTS
That Forever21 shirt she told me I shouldn’t have wasted my money on had a hole in it after the third wash. Your basics are something you go through regularly so not spending a lot of money on them is okay. You shouldn’t skimp on your winter coat, snow boots or vacuum.
If only I had listened to her sooner I wouldn’t have five jackets hanging in my closet that don’t keep me warm.
WHEN YOU FEEL YOURSELF GETTING UPSET–COUNT TO TEN
I used to cry over everything. I would get a poor grade on a test and instantly start bawling my eyes out in the classroom. If I didn’t understand a lesson or couldn’t handle a class I would cry, cry, cry. My emotions always used to get the best of me–sometimes they still do. My mother came up with a solution: count to ten when you feel yourself getting upset.
STICKING UP FOR YOURSELF ISN’T A CRIME
When I was growing up other kids would make fun of me and I would let it get to me or I would brush it off. I was too scared and too shy to fight back. I was always afraid of the consequences. My mother was tired of me crying and kept pushing me to stick up for myself. When I finally did–to a teacher nonetheless–she received a complaint but she didn’t care because she knew they were in the wrong. She never makes me feel bad for sticking up for myself. As long as I do it the right way–no fists or curses.
LET SHIT GO
Don’t hold grudges. Don’t cry over the dick who broke-up with you. Don’t agonize over a bad test grade. If you don’t let the bad stuff go it’ll eat away at you. No one wants to be around your misery. Just let that shit go.
STICK TO A FITNESS ROUTINE WHILE YOU’RE YOUNG
Start working out now. My mother used to ride her bike for miles all around Queens. She participated in bike and running marathons. She also used to wake-up at 5 o’clock in the morning and go to the gym. Her routine hasn’t changed much. She had to let go of the marathons after a bad accident and now she doesn’t have kids to take to school so she can sleep in but she still workouts five times a week.
She looks like she’s forty instead of fifty because she started taking care of herself in her twenties and pushes me to do the same.
ALWAYS WEAR SUNSCREEN
Sunscreen is another reason why she looks so young. Sure, she has some lines and freckles from sun damage but other than that her face is relatively clear because she always tried to protect it.
YOU ONLY LIVE ONCE–THAT DOESN’T MEAN YOU ALWAYS EAT THE BREAD
Indulging is fine but you need to pass on the bread basket every now and again.
We all waste so much time looking down at our phones that life is passing us by. She reminds me to ‘look up’ when we’re traveling. Sometimes I get so focused trying to take a picture or staring at a map trying to get to the next place I forget I’m supposed to be enjoying the one I’m at.
LOVE DOESN’T PAY THE BILLS
Dating a poor man is fine as long as he’s hardworking because love doesn’t pay the bills.
ALWAYS TREAT EVERYONE THE SAME
The CEO of a company and the person pouring you coffee might have different jobs and incomes but that doesn’t mean you treat them differently. Be nice to everyone, both rich and poor, because you never know where someone will end up. Also–a smile goes a long way.
LIVE WITHIN YOUR MEANS
Don’t spend more than you make. Remember to save and live within your means because once you are in debt it is incredibly hard to get out of it.
NOTHING IN LIFE IS GIVEN TO YOU; IF YOU WANT SOMETHING YOU HAVE TO WORK FOR IT
She understands sometimes it is about who you know but once you get where you want to be you still have to work hard to stay there.
What advice has your mother given you that stuck with you? Let me know in the comments below!