The most important things to remember about your mom on Mother’s Day

Relationships with mothers aren’t always all scrambled eggs and walks in the park. You may regard your mom as your best friend, like the Gilmore Girls’ Rory and Lorelai. On the other hand, there are plenty of maternal relationships more akin to the Gilmore Girls’ Lorelai and Emily. No matter what sort of relationship you have with your mother, one of the best Mother’s Day gifts you could ever give on Sunday is to just consider the woman she is and the sacrifices she’s likely made for you.

See, the amazing process of bringing a human into the world (after growing that human from scratch for the better part of a year) is equal parts beautiful and terrifying. There are drastic emotional and physical ups and downs involved. Taking all this into consideration, it is easy to understand why motherhood can take over your entire life. It is natural for a woman to become so wrapped up in her role as a mother that she, and those closest to her, can forget that she was a whole person before donning the mom crown. She has so much love in her heart, and she sacrifices so much, daily, for her family. But there is a great deal more to her than that.

Your Mom was once your age, so she knows what’s up

It seems maybe silly to say, but it’s true: Your mom has gone through all the stages of life you are and have ever gone through yourself. She was a small kid with big dreams, a wide-eyed child yearning for attention and affirmation. She was a teenager, experiencing love and hate for the first time. She was a young adult with no money and plenty of self-doubt. And somewhere along the line, she chose to bring you into her life.

When you’re a little kid, it’s easy to imagine your parents as a separate kind of entity instead of people, just like you. Your mom knows what it’s like, as a woman, to grow and evolve. She has so much wisdom and so many stories to share. This Mother’s Day, take the opportunity to ask her for advice, or to compare experiences. She will likely be thrilled to share her perspective, and you will learn a lot about the woman she was even before she was your mom.

She still totally wants to hang out now that you’re both adults

When kids grow up, sometimes they can get this idea that they should never have to bother their weary parents ever again. This is not true! Your mom has been waiting your whole life for you to be this age! She took a deep breath after every tantrum or slammed door and reassured herself that “one day, when we’re both adults, we’ll speak the same language.” She wants to spend time with you. She worked tirelessly to teach you to be a well-rounded human, and she wants to see that work in motion. Seize the moment and go shopping together or get your nails done! It will seriously make her day.

You are not her entire life

Maybe your mom loves going to concerts or playing poker on the weekends, or maybe she has always had a passion for gardening. It’s so important to remember that your mom is a person with interests outside you (even if you’re one of her main interests!). Taking the time to acknowledge her passions, will let your sweet mom know that you actually listen to her.

Sometimes moms need to talk it out too

When you’re little, your mom can seem like a superhero: Invulnerable to all attacks, able to easily avoid stuff like feeling lonely or awkward or sad. But it’s not true: Moms sometimes need to talk out things too. They have bad days like the rest of us, and want advice and hugs. It’s always a nice gesture to ask your mom what’s going on in her life.

She cares what you think about her too

When your mother met you for the first time, she was probably overtaken with love and awe for you. She looked at slimy, screaming little you and thought, “This is the best thing I’ve ever done!” Tell your mom how much you love her. Get specific, get real. If you have a more contentious relationship with your mom, that’s totally OK: Maybe just take the chance to have a real, honest conversation. Try and get vulnerable about your collective struggles and victories.

Take this Mother’s Day as a step in the direction of personally exploring the woman beneath the mother (or step-mom or grandma or aunt) in your life. Let’s all commit to celebrating our moms and mom-figures in our lives on a deeper level! They so deserve it!

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