I have always encouraged my girls to be specific in their thank you notes. To tell Grandma WHY they love their gift. To tell their teacher specifically what they liked about them. ...and that the best gift is a letter from your heart, with thought put into it about the truth.
That lesson came back to me in spades recently. It was out of the blue. But it's the best recurring Mother's Day gift I've ever received. I carry this in my wallet... and will forever.
Thank you for being the mom all my friends are jealous of. No matter where I go geographically, my friends are always jealous of the relationship I have with you and the person you are.
I love that I can relate any life lesson to some story from your past, because you always teach through storytelling.
I love that I literally beg you to go to the store with me every time I go late at night because I want your company.
I love that you have taught me that although cleaning is important, there are better things in life.
I love that you have always encouraged me to open myself to all experiences. It is something I take a lot of pride in about myself and I undoubtedly get it from your spirit.
I love that I look forward to car trips with you.
I love that you have taught me how wonderful it is to get a genuine compliment. One that is specific and spontaneous, not forced because of a holiday.
I love that you think I'm funny and a good dancer.
I love that you care about my friends for who they are, not just because they're your daughter's friend and you have to like them.
I love that our family can entertain ourselves with each other infinitely. If we were on a deserted island with a radio and a deck of cards, we would be just fine. More like Swiss Family Dunbar.
I love that I think of you when I smell lavender.
I love that I'm freakin tall because of your genes.
I love that you married my Dad.
I love that you tell us when someone tells you how great your two daughters are.
I love that you don't sweat the small stuff. One of my friends has a quote on Facebook by Maya Angelou that says, "I've learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas lights." I've dealt with all of these things and far worse with you and I know that you can keep a cool head up there with the best of them.
I love that you always control your anger. You have never taken a bad day out on my sister or me, and even when it's us you are mad at, you never act strictly out of that anger. That is something I thank God for more that I think you will ever know. With my generation being so attached to our cellphones we commonly get to hear our friend's conversations with their parents. Few people have the ability you do to calm down even when they're late for work and their kid has given them the wrong directions to where to pick them up from.
I love that you used to give me a massage every night if I woke up on time and that you and I would go out to Chinese food on Tuesdays when I was in elementary school.
I love that you have helped me build a strong enough foundation for myself that despite all of these things I can still live 300 miles away and only see you and Dad every 2 months.
I love that you made me a woman of substance.
I love you, that is all.
So who in your life deserves an "I Love That..." letter? How about your Mom... your Dad.... your kid... your aunt... your friend.... your partner? Write it today. Be specific. Be truthful.
It's honestly the best gift you can give. And the best gift you can receive.
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