a breakfast serial

One bite-sized story every morning to uplift, motivate, or provoke thought.

Five Things I Learned from Mom

< by Nate >

A very smart person I know once said the following about mothers: It’ll make her day knowing that you listened.

Maybe I need to add some context here (most likely not). See, as a child/boy/teenager/young adult/man, there are many things we do well. Listening is not one of them.

And mothers, believe it or not guys, want to shed their wisdom on you. Like, pouring-it-over-your-head-so-your-whole-body-can-absorb-it kind of wisdom sharing. Because, let’s face it, as a guy, I need that full-body bath every once in a while.

My mother, Jill Carey, is your typical, run-of-the-mill mom. You know, just always knowing what to say and what to do and how to act all the time. No biggie.

So, to prove that I was listening for all these years, here are the top five things I’ve learned from my mom.

1. When it comes to laundry, wash colored clothes and white clothes separately. I have had far too many white shirts turn pink/light blue over the years. LESSON LEARNED!

2. Swearing, when used in the right situation, can be powerful. I don’t like to swear, even though I sometimes do. But when we got home from the grocery store that one time, and I opened up the back of the Explorer only to have the gallon of milk crash to the floor and break open, my mother’s timely use of synonym for “crap” made me freeze in place.

3. An unbalanced checkbook leads to a worried mind. Plain and simple: Keep that checkbook balanced!

4. It really is the thought that counts. No, really. Put some thought into it dummy. I can’t even begin to explain the number of presents I’ve given mom that were off-the-wall insane. Only I can take her love for moose and turn it into a creepy-looking moose manikin that looks like a Dr. Frankenstein experiment gone much more wrong than usual. AND SHE STILL LOVES IT.

5. Nothing beats a “mom” joke. My dad is a goof. So are my two siblings and I. But when mom chimes in, after spending countless hours as a patient observer, it not only brings down the house, but tops anything anyone else will ever say. In their life. Ever. Period.

My father worked the night shift for most of my childhood, leaving mom as a single parent during the week. She raised three kids right, and also held a full-time job most of the time. Strong, caring and sassy: Jill Carey. That’s my mom.

1 Comment»

  Jorie wrote @

Love this, Nate! What a nice tribute to your mom. And I can’t believe she’s also named Jill. Serendipitous!

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