Ten Things I’ve Learned From My Mom
Now it’s not every time you see a twenty-something tooting the things she’s learned from her mother – and I ask why not? My mom and I have had quite the journey in our relationship – moments where we were pleasantly plum with each other, and seasons where we were, well, not so chummy. But hiccups aside, God must have known what he was doing when he put us together.
I don’t claim these to be expert advice. Just things that I’ve heard from my mom, or simply observed in her life that have gone a long way for me. So here we go. I call this ‘Lady Pointers from Mom’. Hope ya like.
On womanhood: Don’t allow yourself to sit in the shadows as a woman. Yes, respect your man and submit to him. But make sure there is something you are doing with your hands. Don’t make the mistake of becoming only focused on the house – your husband will be busy, your children will grow and leave the house, and then what? Reach for the stars as much as you possibly could. Your man will appreciate you for it in the long run.
On friendship: Friendship should be enjoyable; not burdensome. It’s best that you don’t deal someone else a hand that you wouldn’t like to have. And vise-versa, do not allow anyone to treat you in a way that you just wouldn’t treat them. Make it clear where you stand and they will respect you for it. Likewise, if anyone comes into your life posing as a friend, but proving to be otherwise, find a peaceable way to show them the door to exit. There’s nothing wrong with that.
Got a battle? Here’s how you fight. Walk in peace with whoever’s involved. Genuinely greet them, and if it’s in your power to do so, celebrate when they celebrate. But don’t forget to pray. You’ve heard the kingdom of God suffers violence, and it’s the violent (the prayerful) that win.
A young lady has always got to look good. Old shoes, undone hair, tattered nails…no, no, no! A man needs something new look at all the time. And he also likes to know his lady’s the best dressed in the room. So here’s a pointer, while you are young, and don’t have your money and time tied up in diapers, PTA assignments, and a mortgage. Don’t be cheap – buy yourself some nice thing every now and then.
On life in corporate America: You are a woman; you are a woman of color, and on top of that, you look so young. But that’s no excuse to let anyone relegate you to the side. If you have something valuable to say, speak. Cover the room with your eyes, make eye contact. It should be clear that you’ve got smarts, and that you came to play too. There’s no need to be loud and bossy – but show yourself to be someone of value.
In the same vein, respect your authorities. Respect your leadership, but don’t let it turn into people worship. Stand your ground before people that expect you to bow at their beck and call. You are accepted by God, and their hearts are in his hands. That’s what matters.
Don’t forget the kitchen. Yes, reach for the stars, do business, be a leader. But you’ve gotta know your way around the kitchen. As she’s personally told me, “every woman in my house must know to cook”. Nuff said.
Speak the truth. People may not be comfortable with your boldness in doing so at first. But when the rubber meets the road, and decisions need to be made, you’ll be the one they want to hear from. Because they know you’ll tell it like it is.
Live life honest. Doing this might feel painful at times, especially when you see others cutting corners and moving up while they do it. But God sees – and he’s very good with payback time. When he pays you back, it will be like the time lost was just a second. You will enjoy your blessings with no sorrow, while others that cheated will spend a lifetime covering their tracks. Integrity pays off in the end.
For the single gal: God knows how to give good gifts to his girls. And his timing is oh so perfect. So don’t you worry. When it’s your time, God will give you a man that will dote on you. He’ll desire you. He’ll be smitten with you. So until that time comes, just relax. Let God beautify you in other areas of your life. He’ll make you irresistible to whomever it will eventually concern.