LIFE LESSON FROM MY MORALLY CORUPT MUM
It's common knowledge that Mum's are wells of wisdom. Everyone thinks their mother is the best mumma out there, and they're RIGHT. But this story is about my Mum. She loves gin, her cat, documentaries about morbid things, and we share a deep love for Fleetwood Mac.
My mum is young. In comparison to other people my age, theres a sizeable gap and that's because I sprang into being when she was the ripe old age of 16. Surprise! Put down your wine coolers and michael jackson cassette tapes and pick up some shitty diapers please.
I had a really wonderful life growing up, and I count myself very lucky to have had this type of upbringing, especially due to the common issues and stigma that come from being a teen parent - they never seemed to be present or at very least, noticeable in our lives.
Among her many admirable traits, my favourite one is thus.
My mum is a tough bitch.
She's taught me many things, and a lot as I moved through my twenties. I would say my mother has had the largest affect on me in the last 4 years to be honest, and it seems only logical that i share with you all just how many things I've learnt.
Your gender should never get in the way of where you want to be.
My mum has had some really varying jobs over her lifetime, and has fought really hard to get where she is today - a Programme Director of an International Development Agency.
She's told me stories of men talking over her, men asking her to get coffees, men making unwanted sexual advances on her - which is frankly not shocking, due to the current state of gender equality in big business.
I never saw her get upset, let it get to her, let it change her view on where she wanted to be. I only ever heard 'I laughed and told him to get his own fucking coffee'.
She was adamant in telling me to never, ever let people decide what you are worth. Whether it be sexual harassment, belittling your job or title, or just a lack of respect - it only becomes a problem when you let them change YOUR idea of worth.
Stand up for yourself, always always. And say fuck if you have to.
Good coffee is very important.
Also, Starbucks is not real coffee.
Moping doesn't fix anything.
This, I fought with for a long time. There were times where I just wanted to vent and mope and be a mess for a while, but she hassled me into getting up and cutting that shit out. It used to annoy me, because I wanted sympathy. But as I got older, I realised that she willingly gave sympathy and support when it was legitimately needed, but she could tell when I was being over dramatic or just a whiny bitch and she didn't have time for that shit.
When I told her I was severely depressed, she was nothing less than amazing. She told me to quit my job, go to therapy, and go to the doctor. She also made sure to check in on me to make sure I had gotten out of bed that day, and that I was trying to make progress.
It may not work for everyone, but my mums relentless ability to push through when she needs to, has made a huge difference on who I am.
When I got dumped, I got a lot of comments about how strong I was being, how people were impressed at how I was handling it. I attribute my ability to assess my situation and pick myself up when I need to, entirely to my mum.
Allow yourself the grief, and the mourning time. But acknowledge when it's gone too far.
Figure out what makes you feel good, and do it regularly.
My mum has an obsession. Almost a need really. And it's for high heels, and lipstick.
I can't count the amount of times I've heard her sing 'Lipstick makes me haaaaawwwppeeeeeee' as she puts it on, or buys another one.
She is over 6 months pregnant right now, and still wearing heels every single day. OH, she told me though that she can't wear her highest pair anymore and that makes her sad.
My point is, these things make her happy and she indulges in them regularly. She also pays for those 15 minute Chinese massages where she gets pommeled to bits because its a good expense that makes her feel better.
She's the reason why I get my nails done, and go out for a drink and read a book on my own. I say, treat yo self is a good life rule.
Dont use the 'C' word unless you are proper angry.
The one swear word she won't allow. But she has a point, save one up so people know you're REALLY pissed off.
You can actually do whatever you want, no matter where you came from.
Due to the lovely surprise of me turning up when she was 16, she didn't get the chance to finish high school. Or go to Uni, or any of the things that is common place for young adults sorting out who they want to be when they're grown.
She managed to come from a tiny town in the wop wops of Southland - with a baby, and get to where she is today. It wasn't easy, she had to work a lot of different, weird jobs, but she knew she wanted to GTFO and make something of her life.
My whole life she's encouraged me to figure out what I love and what I want, and make it happen. Put in the hard work, because you don't get anywhere without hard work.
I attribute my desire to do something I love and get paid for it, to watching her do the exact same thing as I grew up.
Anyone who bitches at you for swearing, can sod off.
Self explanatory really. Though I will mention the time someone complained that she swore too much at a conference presentation,and called her 'morally corrupt'.
She thought that was hilariously brilliant and put it in her twitter profile.
Good preventative skincare is everything.
She has the best skin ever. I need to get on with the night creams and eye creams ASAP because apparently, it's never to early to use eye cream.
My relationship with my mother isn't perfect. We bicker frequently, and have conflicting ideals and views all the time, which usually ends up with us mocking each other very loudly (Her husband can attest to both these statements).
But my morally corrupt parent is pretty awesome.