My mother was killed very unexpectedly when I was only a year old. It was a Sunday morning and she loaded me into our car to head for church, as she had many mornings prior. She sang and played piano, so I am sure we were headed out early. She drove down our long driveway and into the street. She proceeded less than a mile down our street and BAM! — a drunk teenage driver hit our car, knocking us into a tree. She was killed instantly.
It is a sad story, I know, but because I never knew her, I never really mourned her death. I did hear stories about her through the years and learned of her personality (much of which I am similar, I hear). I have often wondered what life would have been like if she would have been around. I am convinced she would have taught me three things:
1. You are beautiful. Mothers just know that. They know their daughters are beautiful and they do not hesitate to tell them. I never heard that as a child.
2. No man is worth abuse. My mother walked through some abusive relationships and stayed in them far too long. I wonder if I would have had her in my life if I would have ever walked into some of the relationships that I did.
3. Think carefully before you act. The consequences of poor choices are never worth it. My mom suffered through the consequences of some poor choices in her life, as we all do. I made many mistakes through the years. I often wondered, if my mom was around, if she would have caught me sneaking out of the house as a teen or kissing boys I shouldn’t have. Would she have been there as a listening ear to gently guide me down the right path and offer that motherly wisdom?
As a mother, I have tried very hard to be that listening ear for my own children. I have worked to steer them down the right paths. I have spoken honestly and frequently to them about my own life’s choices. I remind them of the importance of a mother’s wisdom in their life. Treasure those opportunities with your own children to be the best parent you can be. Don’t dwell on that parent they may lack. There is nothing you can do about it. Focus on what you can do. Teach them. Love them.
Author/Speaker Jennifer Maggio is considered one of the nations’ leading authorities on single parent issues. She is a sought-after speaker, critically-acclaimed author, and founder of The Life of a Single Mom Ministries. She currently runs one of that nation’s largest single mom support groups and has helped to launch more than 100 others. For more info, visit http://www.jennifermaggio.com.