Happiness is…being the reason behind your parent’s smiles.

This morning, I read an article that my good friend Michelle received from her daughter about reasons to call your Mom every day. Funny thing. I have been reminded of this several times in the last few weeks – a conversation with Dennis, a speech made at the Academy Awards, a devotion about the comparison of our earthly father and our heavenly Father…

So, here is my adaptation of the article’s advice, since I am a Mom and can so relate, and since I can no longer call my Mom but still have my Dad and will soon get to see him every day – a privilege I do not want to take for granted:

Your Mom and Dad were your first friends.

As cliché as it might sound, they’ve been there for you through thick and thin – standing behind you when you had the motorcycle wreck and went through ten surgeries; loving you with no words when you became pregnant before it was time and then embracing their first granddaughter with all that was within them; encouraging your fleeting dreams of stardom when you wanted to go to The Wheaton Conservatory of Music; holding you and walking beside you with no judgment when you left your marriage and endured such emotional pain no one can really understand.

They are your biggest fans and never fail to brighten up even the most horrid of days.

There’s no one quite as special as Mom and Dad.

Having parents who support you is the greatest blessing in life. It can be easy to take their love for granted because you know it’s unconditional; they’re always going to be there for you.

What you need to remember, however, is this: they are people, too, with feelings of their own.

You might have all these fabulous friends in your 20-something, 30-something, 40-something, and now 50-something life, but you should not forget, your Mom and/or Dad is a better friend than anyone.

And though they might not say it, they are definitely a little lonelier now that you have a life of your own.

They want to hear your voice and are sincerely interested in every mundane detail of your chaotic life. Just a phone call away…

Like it or not, Mom wasn’t around forever, and Dad isn’t going to be around forever, either, Rhonda. Take your head out of the sand and appreciate the two who made you. No one will ever love you as much as they do.

21 reasons to call your parent every single day.

  1. They have your best interest at heart, no ulterior motives. They are your Mommy and Daddy.
  2. They are the only ones who can listen to you talk about yourself for 30 minutes straight without rolling their eyes. They wholeheartedly encourage your narcissism.
  3. They will congratulate you just for getting out of bed. It is a huge achievement, and thus, you are amazing.
  4. They never fail to make your day and know what to say when you’re feeling crappy about yourself.
  5. They made you, so you kind of owe them. She carried you for nine months and then pushed your fat head out of her body, and they financially supported you throughout childhood and protected you as best they could from life’s tragedies. They deserve a phone call.
  6. They give the best advice they know how to give. There is no advice like Mom and Dad’s advice.
  7. You got it from your Mama and Dad! You have them to thank for your gorgeous face.
  8. They are always in your corner. When you need someone to vent to about your horrible boss, they’re automatically on your team.
  9. You’ll feel more connected to them. Especially since they live far away, a phone call is the best way to stay close.
  10. To complain about your life being in shambles. When your friends were sick of hearing about it, and you were too poor for formal therapy, remember that Dr. Mom and Dr. Dad were there to listen and support. They have a PhD in “you.”
  11. To complain, period. No one else wants to hear about how bitter you are towards everything and everyone. Not that they WANT to hear it, but they won’t hang up on you.
  12. They should be among your best friends. They were your first friend; they will be your forever friend.
  13. They won’t judge you. Of course, they have disagreed with some of your life choices, but Mom and Dad love you too much to judge you, and they accept you for who you are today.
  14. They know you better than anyone and can speak with greater perspective than any of your basic friends.
  15. They are more like you than anyone. Scary thought, yes, but they do share your genes.
  16. Mom and Dad are lonely with you so far away. Now that you are living your own life, the nest is empty; Mom will always be a Mom, and Dad will always be a Dad. They need your sincere care, concern, and support after supporting you for the past 20,30,40,50 years. It’s time to ask them about THEIR lives for a change, rather than dominating the conversation and making it all about you.
  17. They genuinely want to talk to you. Getting a phone call from you will be the highlight of their day. Doesn’t knowing that make you feel special?
  18. They have paid the bill how many times now? They still fund so much, even now that you are a fully-functioning adult, so you should show some appreciation.
  19. Mom needs girl talk. She probably doesn’t have a whole gaggle of friends sitting around, waiting for girl talk. And she misses just “hanging out” with you. Likewise, Dad needs to feel like his advice is needed and wanted. Parents “take care of things.” Just because they are older doesn’t mean that characteristic goes away. Dad also needs to feel like you LIKE hanging out with him – not because you need anything, but because you just like being with him.
  20. You can never talk to Mom or Dad too much. You may be in your 20’s, 30’s, 40’s, or 50’s now, living your big, hot-shot life, but you know you’ll always need their advice for basically everything and anything.
  21. To tell Mom you love her. To tell Dad you love him. Enough said.

 Adapted from the article by Gigi Engle from Elite Daily.

So, I am grateful for my parents.

I am grateful for the reminder to pick up the phone and call Dad and spend time with him. I should be the one to make the effort at this stage of life. I am not a child anymore.

I am grateful that I haven’t been a complete failure in life – that I have been able to experience the happiness mentioned in the title above. Not always, but most always.

And I am grateful that I am a Mom and feel what my own Mom felt – the overwhelming joy and inner thrill, the overwhelming grief and deep hurt that only a parent can know. I am grateful that after all of these years, I finally “get it.”

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