It’s Thanksgiving and I’m a cynic to the core. I won’t even try to curb that part of me. It’d be the equivalent of taking out a vital organ as an experiment and seeing how I’d function. All that said, I’m definitely most thankful for my mom. She’s awesome, I jokingly refer to her as Mother Theresa but in the same breathe she grates my nerves. That’s a mutual feeling between us. I recall at 19 or 20 her telling me that she loved me but didn’t like me. We were definitely in the middle of a rough patch and I felt the same way, so I was unaffected by this truth being spoken.
At 21, my dad told me that I needed to work on my relationship with my mom. I looked at him like he was crazy because we definitely had similar things we struggled with in terms of her personality and approach to things. My dad told me that my mom was who she was and that wouldn’t change, I needed to change how I responded to her. I took my dad’s advice and it changed my relationship dramatically with my mother. My dad was the parent I had always been closest to. My relationship with him was the definition of unconditional love. I feel like there are few people who understood each other as we did. It was a gift to experience that. My dad was diagnosed with prostrate cancer in my junior year of high school and passed away when I was 25. He was my the best friend.
I’m most thankful for the gift that my dad gave me to repair my relationship with my mother. I’m sure he understood that we’d need each other after he was no longer here and my shift in approach was key to making this happen.