I won the lotto when it comes to my mom whom I call “Mama.” She is and always has been my number one supporter, truth teller, protector, confidant, organizer, and believer in my potential. Mother’s Day reminds me to celebrate all Mama taught me.
Lessons from A Strong Woman
What inspires me most about Mama is her absolute faith that things will work out. ~Silvia Mordini
I have never ever seen her give up or even come close. She isn’t afraid of rising to the countless challenges brought before her.
Her life wasn’t always easy, and this was especially true after my parents emigrated from Ecuador where my father had been a professor at the University of Quito. Mama arrived in the United States without any friends or family.
In Ecuador, she had been the valedictorian of her high school and college, as well as a Fulbright Scholar (which is why my parents met at Indiana University), but none of that seemed to matter in the US. At that time, her entire resume of scholastic achievement had little meaning because she was still viewed as an immigrant.
Nevertheless, she went on to become a teacher and completed a second master’s degree in library science. This led to her next career as a librarian which included becoming the director of the Barat College library.
Mama is the most efficient person I’ve met. She works smarter, never harder. She loves to laugh and doesn’t put up with anyone bullying her. I don’t remember a single moment where she was ever concerned with what others thought or intended for her. She takes sole responsibility for her life through and through. And to top it off, she has a beaming confidence and always practices positive self love.
It is with admiration and love that I want to share with you my Mama’s lifetime of advice.
How has my mother taught me? Let me count the ways.
1. You are loved unconditionally.
2. Put your family first.
3. Plan ahead.
4. You will survive.
5. Don’t waste time worrying.
6. Deal with your problems.
7. Read a lot of books.
8. Stand up straight.
9. Stop wrinkling your forehead.
10. If you lose everything, you can always work at a grocery store.
11. Never pay full price.
12. Laugh every day, even if it’s just at yourself.
13. Never waste. Reuse, recycle, repurpose.
14. Be competent. Do your best.
15. Stay up to date with current events in the world.
16. Go to school. Education is the one thing that will always stay with you.
17. Always make your bed.
18. Never use paper plates.
19. Don’t wear makeup every day.
20. Take good care of your shoes, and they’ll last forever.
21. If you don’t like your job, change it.
22. Life is short. Don’t wait to travel the world.
23. Speak proper English. Be articulate.
24. Don’t use curse words as regular speech. They make you sound uneducated.
25. Support yourself. Be financially independent.
These are all the most important life lessons I have learned from Mama. I struggle to fill her shoes but hold out that I’m still growing into this genetic inheritance! I am so deeply grateful that she has given me the incredible tools to be the best version of myself.
Life is precious and all too short, pay extra attention to your Mom today and everyday. Remember that we don't get to do today over again, and none of us know how many days we have left to celebrate our moms.
Tune in and be present to the lessons your mother is offering you. You won’t regret it. Love yourself, love your day, love your life, love your mom!
Dedicated as a love note to my mother, Lourdes Mordini.