Dear mom, you're the best

My mom is the one of the most amazing humans I know (I mean she is planning a family service activity for her birthday, come on people). Not in the “she’s like totally my best friend and does everything with me” type of way that a lot of girls talk about. I mean in the truest sense, she is amazing. Like, let’s say in my last job interview, I started talking about her and started crying. Yes, crying. In an interview. Tears. SOBBING and finally choking out the words “she’s the best”.

I don’t know where to start. I don’t know where to end. And if I’m being truthful, I’ve been trying to write this post for the past two years, but nothing does my mom justice, nothing, but here goes nothing.

She gave up so much for me and my sister to have what we have today, to be where we are today. She was a single mom with two kids, still going to school to get her Bachelor’s degree. She didn’t have much, but she had a family who loved her and two daughters who needed her. So she found a way to make it work, and I watched her graduate from the University of Washington when I was 7 years old. And she continued to work hard and push herself further so that she could support our small little family of three.

I didn’t know it then, but we weren’t the richest.

I remember eating hamburger helper for dinner (and loving it). I remember getting everything I wanted for my birthdays, well, except Barbies because according to momma Reyes those were not acceptable role models/examples for young girls. I remember laughing my head off while she wrapped my sister and me in towels like little lumpias (look it up).

We didn’t have much, but we had each other and we had our family. I don’t look back and remember being poor (I mean, come on, I had all the Lisa Frank school supplies I wanted AND Crayola crayons), I look back and see that I had everything I needed and most of what I wanted.

She has conquered so much. She has overcome so much, and I could not be more proud of the person she is and how far she has come. I can’t get over how much she continues to strive to grow and become better than who she was before. How she is always serving those around her and making sure that others are provided for.

Looking back, it honestly breaks my heart to see some of the things she sacrificed for us. It breaks my heart to look back at how difficult and unappreciative I was of her when I was like 14-18 (SORRY MOM). Because she has done nothing but put me and my sister first our whole lives. Like when she shut down her catering business because we needed more, even though it was her passion. Like how she’d make sure we had rides to everything and that she made it to as many as our games as she could, even if she was a little late.

Looking back, I can see how extremely blessed I was (and still am) to be her daughter.

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how I’m becoming more and more like my mother and that has made me think more about how that makes me feel. If you asked me 10 years ago, I would’ve been mortified, trust me. But now, I couldn’t be more proud to be even a smidgen of the woman she is.

And I guess, I’m writing this because I am so overwhelmed with gratitude for everything that she has done for me and everything she is. For the example that she has set for me, for showing me that hard work and dedication can take you to places you never expected. For making time for the things that mattered.

So here’s to you mom, thanks for being the best. Thanks for loving me even when I’m a poop. Thanks for putting things in perspective for me when I’m being overly dramatic and freaking out. Thanks for loving me. Thanks for going to my 6th grade field trip to the sewage plant and not being too mad when we went to the Seahawks stadium the next week and you couldn’t get the time off again to go to that one (oops, my bad!).

Thanks for being you and thanks for making me, me. I love you more than I ever tell you.

xoxo - Tater