To be completely honest, I dreaded today for a few weeks. It’s not that I don’t appreciate my mother or love to honor her on this day. Rather, it is my first Mother’s Day in the family ward and now that I’ve been recently called to the Relief Society presidency, I tried to forget this feeling of growing up and my very apparent single status. I don’t feel like I’m a mother in any sense or rhyme of the word and yet I still walked away from Church today with the loaf of bread given to all the sisters in the ward.

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I guess I have a high standard of what a mother is. My mother is truly one of the best. I didn’t know it growing up. I often complained about how old she was old-fashioned. It annoyed me that she made me attend every Church activity and got on me for gaining weight and not knowing how to control my appetite. I REALLY hated when she made me take organ lessons (that’s right… I had to learn how to play the organ after playing the piano. It was awful).

It was around my sophomore year of college that I began to understand her a bit better. My roommates and I weren’t getting along and I had no one to talk to after having a bad day. No one was home so I sat on the stairs in my little apartment and called her to cry and ask what I should do. She talked me through the situation and her recommendations. Once we finished, I was calm enough to do what needed to be done.

My mother is amazing. I adore her. She is the first person I think of to call when something good happens, something funny, or something bad. We have the same sense of humor and many of the same annoyances. I have come to rely on her so much. But I recognize that she is not the person I call when I need dating advice. And she’s not the person that gives great work advice. Or if I want to spend a bunch of money on a dress, I definitely don’t ask her.

When I was out on my mission, in my first month in the field, I received an email from one of my brothers. My mother couldn’t write because she was in the hospital with a blood clot. For weeks I had nightmares that my mother wasn’t going to be around when I completed my mission. I cried myself to sleep, terrified that I had said my last goodbye to my mother. Luckily, she recovered and is still alive. But after that 18 months without her, I try to tell her how much I love her as often as I can (probably not often enough) and I give her a hug and a kiss every time I leave home. I guess I’m still afraid of her leaving me.

So, maybe I have a lot to live up to. A strong, independent, smart woman. One day, I hope I can be a mother like her.

Laurel