Thank you Mum - What your kids are too young to say
Recently my Mum turned 60, she had a small celebration with friends and family and I spoke on behalf on my brothers and sisters. As I thought about what I wanted to say it struck me that I had never really bothered to say these things out loud to my Mum before. We're not a family that talks about our feelings a lot and I guess to some degree I took it for granted that my Mum knows how I feel and how grateful I am. However, as I spoke these words out loud at her birthday I realised how much it means to truly know that your sacrifices have been acknowledged and appreciated.
Often our kids are too young to appreciate what we do and I know for me it wasn't until I had kids of my own that I realised how much you give of yourself to become a mother and run a household. So while this speech was for my Mum, I think it equally applies to all parents out there. I was lucky enough that my Mum was able to stay home and raise us kids which meant she was always there. However many modern families do not have this luxury or choose to be in the workforce, so while you may not make it to every school sports day you're still a great parent.
Here's an excerpt that I hope will tide you over until your kids are old enough to tell you themselves, because being a parent is a hard job. There are so many ups and downs and often you feel unappreciated - so parents out there these words are for you too.
"Thanks for always being there for us. You've taken us to more sports games and practices than I can count, you've managed our teams and fundraised for trips. You've been a parent helper on so many occasions, volunteered on the PTA and never missed a school sports day or recital.
Thank you for the sacrifices that you've made to raise this family. The things you've given up as you prioritise our needs before your own. Thank you for the years of cooking, cleaning, washing and all the other numerous things that it takes to run a household.
Thank you for the years of broken sleep, of getting up to bad dreams, for illnesses and waiting up to make sure we got home safely.
Thank you for the thousands of stories you read, for listening to our reading and helping us with our homework. Thank you for your patience and for teaching us all that you know.
Thank you for going without so that we could have what we needed. Thank you for finding the money to pay for my braces and giving me confidence in myself.
Thank you for always taking the burnt chop, the bruised piece of fruit and letting me eat the last biscuit even though they were your favourite. Thank you for all the homemade birthday cakes, one for each of us even though you had three birthdays within two weeks.
Thank you for being the one to take the photos, rather than be in them.
Thank you for giving me everything I needed but not everything I wanted.
Thank you for letting me make my own mistakes, for not passing judgement and for being there to wipe up the tears when things went wrong.
Thank you for making my childhood one filled with happiness. When I look back I know that we were extremely lucky to have you as our mother.
Thank you for helping me raise my own children and for the example you've set for me.
Even now, every time we come home the tins are filled with our favourite home baking and you cook our favourite meals. Coming home I get to feel like a child again, I love that your home always feels like my home and even though I'm all grown up I still sometimes get to be the one taken care.
Thank you Mum, we are blessed to have you".