There are countless ways you have helped me learn and grow. I could write an entire book of them all. Do you remember:
When I was three, and I stole a pack of bubble gum from the grocery store?
I was sitting in the back seat of your car trying to figure out how to open it and you just so happened to look back at me and realized what I had done. You turned the car around and promptly returned to the store. On the ride back, you explained to me that taking things without paying for them is wrong. When we arrived you had me apologize to the cashier and made me give it back. The cashier said I could keep it and that it was okay because I didn't know any better. But you told the woman "Thank you, but it is not okay. I have to teach her now what is right and wrong; I cannot allow her to keep it." That was the day you taught me morality.
When I was five, and I stepped on a piece of glass?
Grammy drove me to the hospital to have them check my foot out. By the time that we arrived, there you were, waiting for us at the entrance of the hospital, asking grammy what took so long for us to get there. I remember the doctor saying that he had to put a needle into my cut to numb the area for my stitches. When I asked him if it would hurt you and he exchanged a glance. You stroked my hair and held my hand. You looked at him and said "I will not lie to my daughter." Then you looked at me. "Yes, it's going to hurt but only for a minute." You said, as the tears ran down your face. Looking back, I remember that it didn't hurt that much at all. I think you cried more than I did. That was the day I learned honesty.
When I was seven, and my best friend died?
I was in my room playing with my Barbie dolls and you called me into the living room. You and dad sat me down, said we needed to talk and told me what had happened. You explained to me the best you could why I would never see my friend again. You explained to me that death is a part of life. When I said it wasn’t fair, you told me you agreed. I remember you keeping an even closer eye on me after that day, determined to protect me from the cruelties of the world. That was the day I learned of fear, and mortality.
When I was nine, and I sprained my wrist?
You never let me stray too far from the house, always afraid something bad was going to happen. I begged and pleaded for you to let me ride my bike that day, promising I would be careful. You said I could but I had to be back in time for supper, and told me not to ride too fast or I would get myself hurt. I rolled my eyes and said okay as I left the house. I rode my bike up the road and found some kids to play with. We raced our bikes around the block and I took a corner way too fast, falling off my bike. Instantly I felt the pain in my wrist and looked in horror at the scrapes on my knees. That was the day I learned, mom is always right.
Ever since I can remember you have been there for me. You were always loving, never judging, and my own personal protector. You're the epitome of what a mother should be. I know I may not always say or show it, but I appreciate all that you do and have done for me throughout my life. You always put me first and never thought twice about it. Even to this day, while I'm grown and married, you still continue to be my guiding light and truly my best friend. I just wanted to say, thank you mom. I cannot thank you for one particular thing, but for everything. You showed me what it means to be a strong, loving, and independent woman. You have instilled in me so many morals and lessons that I will always cherish. It is truly an honor and a privilege to call you my mother.
Bethany Lynn Vine ©