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Momma Lovin’

 

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Momma Lovin’

Last week was Teacher Appreciation Week, and my mom wrote this post about what it means to be a good teacher. She talks about developing a love for reading and learning while she was pregnant with me in order to give me (and later on my brother) the absolute best of out life. I’ve had so many amazing teachers from grade school to college, but she is by far the best one. Just a few of the important lessons I’ve learned from my mom are…

  1. Never stop dreaming.

Upon attending college I’ve started to learn about the emphasized importance of financial stability and securing a career. I’ve noticed that many people stick to the straight and narrow- pursuing jobs that seem reasonably stable and not far out of reach. Not only did my mom put herself through school with two kids to get her teaching degree, she also had the courage to quit and pursue her other dream-becoming an author. From the time I was little she and my dad have both told me I can become anything I want be, and thanks to that, here I am in college chasing my dreams of one day becoming a Paralympic athlete.

  1. Chocolate fixes everything.

It can be a banana split from Dairy Queen, or mint chocolate-chip ice cream from Breyers, but whatever it is, it makes the absolute worst heartaches go away.

  1. And last but not least; always give.

My mom has always been the kindest person I’ve ever known. Whenever we go to a big city, she purposefully grabs a handful of cash to hand out to the homeless and anyone in need. My favorite memory of her generosity was during one of the many college tours we went on my junior year of high school. We were completely lost somewhere in Gainesville trying to find the University of Florida’s main campus. We pulled over and asked a young man for directions. He told us exactly how to get where we needed to go, and then my mom proceeded to offer him a ride to the place he was heading. I was sitting in the front seat freaking out. Why did she just ask a stranger to get into the car with us?! Who was this guy?! What if he has a gun?! So many awful scenarios were running through my head of what could happen to us. Of course everything turned out fine, but after he left I turned to my mom and yelled at her welcoming this completely random person into our car. At the time I thought it was crazy, what about our safety? She laughed at my anxiety and told me she knew that he too just needed some help. Then she smirked and added, “Besides, he was so scrawny, I could have taken him down any day!” I was mesmerized by not only her bravery but also her big-heart. She has taught me to have a bullet proof sense of optimism and how see the good in everyone, no matter the circumstance.

Whether it’s raising stray kittens or cooking meals for a friend in need- my mom continuously gives more than any other person I’ve ever met. I recently won $500 for getting tenth place in the Boston Marathon (Woohoo, thanks Coach!), but in honor of Mother’s Day and my mom’s birthday I’m going to donate it all to these two projects (“Special Kids Expression Through Art” and “Ball Chairs for Bouncy Minds!“) at Donorschoose.org. If you haven’t ever used the site I highly recommend it! The two classrooms I picked to donate to have children with special needs in them, and going through public school with a special need myself, I know how much the equipment I helped fund will mean to these teachers and students.

Thanks so much to all the incredible women out there this Mother’s Day, so many of you have helped shaped my life into the incredible, joyful adventure it is today. But thanks most of all to my own mom. I love you so much and can’t thank you enough for all of the opportunities you have given me by being such an incredible teacher. I can’t wait to see you in nine days!!

 

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