Thursday, April 17, 2014

5 Things I Learned: Mom Was Right!

Despite the profuse arguing, eye-rolling, and head shaving of my formative years, my mom never stopped giving advice.  I rarely took it then, but I'm glad I have it now.

Here are 5 pieces of advice I learned from my mom:

1.  The rules apply to you.  Like it or not, the rules apply to everyone.  It sometimes makes me cuckoo bananas when I see someone act like the rules don't apply to them.  The same can be said for my mom.  For years she loved volunteering to write tickets to people who parked in the handicapped spots without placards. And, yes, she'd show up at court when challenged (with Polaroids!).
2.  You don't have to sleep, but you do have to rest.  When I had a hard time sleeping, I'd want to get up and do something.  My mom taught me that even if I couldn't sleep, it was still important to lie down and rest.  You may not go back to sleep just lying there, but you definitely won't go back to sleep if you're not lying down. Though Babyface naps sporadically, he still has to rest during nap time.
3.  A joke is a funny story.  Along with my sharp-tongued siblings, we used words to cut to the quick, often wrapped as a joke.  "A joke is a funny story," mom would say, "not making fun of someone or at their expense." When someone says something mean in a funny way, it can be hurtful, whether it's intentional or not.
4.  Put some money in your 'something' fund because there's always something.  Just when I think I'm on top of my finances, my car needs four new tires or we have an extravagant vet bill or, you know, something. It's never an unexpected expense of $50, it's usually a swift kick to the wallet.

5.  If you don't ask, you'll never know. Where nerve and thriftiness meet, you'll find my mom.  She has the nerve to do things because she doesn't care if the answer is no.  Last year she knocked on our neighbors door and, long story short, we now have their toddler climbing equipment. When I was applying to college for undergrad, I was reluctant to apply to schools that I didn't think would take me.  "For $50, you let them tell you no.  You don't tell yourself no," she said.  Now I didn't go nuts and apply to Harvard, but I did apply to some schools that were a stretch.  My admissions counselor doubted I'd get into any of them, but I got accepted at two, wait listed at two and denied at two. I took the same approach when applying to graduate school.


Carol said...

Loved your piece on mom's advice. #5 struck a chord so deep within me that I'll be mulling on it for a while.# 3 also spoke volumes what a great way to put it and how so true.

Amina Hafiz Sarraf said...

I'm so glad. Sometimes trying new things can be VERY scary or even taking a risk. But if the worst thing that happens is that I'm told no, well, I'm in the same place I am right now.