I got married the week after I turned 19. I was pretty much fresh off the boat from highschool and didn't know half as much as I thought I did. I've spent the last ten years doing things "my way" and have only recently realized that all my trial and error, research and learning, has brought me back around to doing things the way my mom has done them my whole life. I should have just paid attention and then I could have skipped to level II. But nooooo, I had to figure it out for myself because that is what teenagers do.
When she bought us raw milk, straight from the cow, she was right. I refused to drink it because that was just too close to the source for comfort. I wanted a nice plastic jug as evidence the cow cooties had been eliminated. But here I am, meeting the farmer on Sunday, because raw milk is good for you and you are super lucky if you can get your hands on it. And I'm starting my boys on it before they are old enough to think it's weird.
When she refused to buy Hamburger Helper and made all our food from scratch, much to our annoyance, she was right. When I got married I bought Hamburger Helper out of pure rebellion. Boxes and boxes of it. If we had company, I would add a can of corn to it, and then we had gourmet Hamburger Helper. But now I'm older and wiser, and back to making dinner from scratch because that's what is best for my family.
When my mom scrubbed the floor on her hands and knees and then made my brother and I stand on towels and skate around to dry it, she was right. That is a really good way to clean a floor. It's not the only way, but it's a good one.
When she let us water down her fallow garden plot and swim in it like mud skippers, she was right. Kids love mud and a little dirt never hurt anyone.
When she used a dishrag to wash dishes instead of the cool sponges everyone else had, she was right. I just read an article on sponges and bacteria that totally squigged me out. I now wash my dishes with a hot soapy rag, which I have been avoiding for ten years because I could "afford" to buy sponges and Martha Stewart uses them. Yeah, I'm that much of a brat. My mom was right, and Martha let me down.
When she said not to waste my money on jars of baby food and to just make my own, she was right. I had to learn that one the hard way and have a picky eater now to show for it.
When she said that a few germs are good for your immune system and not to freak out about disinfecting everything in sight, she was right. Studies are coming out that prove soap and water is just as effective on your hands and the people who overuse antibacterial products get sick more often. My mom's been saying that for years.
When she signed me up for writing workshops, Shakespeare camps, and sports teams, and didn't tell me until she was dropping me off to avoid the gigantic fight, she was right. Those experiences shaped me as a person and exposed me to things that I would have never tried on my own. I learned that I love Shakespeare and writing, and I hate soccer. And that's okay.
When she used vinegar and water to clean everything, she was right. I spent ten years buying every cleaning product I could get my hands on because I'd never really had any before. I liked the bright colorful labels and the declaration that it would kill 99% of my germs. And they matched my sponges. Ten years later, I'm reading books like Organic Housekeeping and mixing up my very own bottle of vinegar and water and homemade comet. They make me feel way cooler than my store-bought cleaners ever did.
When she asked me to help her cook, watching each step vigilantly but then giving me all the credit for the final product, she was right. I've started doing this with my boys and it makes me happy to see them feel proud of something they helped cook.
When she said sunscreen gives you skin cancer, and I rolled my eyes and blithely applied the Coppertone, she was right. That stuff will kill ya. Get yourself some organic/natural stuff without all the chemicals. Or better yet, get a hat.
When she had her Bible open on the countertop and was memorizing scripture while she cooked, she was right. A conviction has been growing in my heart lately about how important this is. I have a project in mind that's going to help me do it too.
When I was discouraged and depressed over the last ten years, and she said "Kira, you need to get in the Word," she was right. That probably would have really helped.
Yep, my mom was right about a lot of things and I wish I would have just listened to her. But if I had, they would still be her convictions and not my own. And I guess that's the point. I think I should get a cookie or something for reaching this important milestone.
|Me, Mom, and my sister Elli|