Dear Mom & Dad, thank you for being you. Thank you for the nights you stayed up late teaching me how to pass my physics class in high school, how to budget, how to love a tiny human that suddenly became mine. Thank you for tirelessly showing up for me, both physically and emotionally.
Thank you for teaching me that despite all the craziness, family does remain.
I’m learning, now, in my own parenting journey, that this role isn’t easy. I’m learning that, perhaps, there were many times I made your jobs harder than they had to be and pushed back a little too much. As I’ve navigated my own adult life, my own mistakes and selfish decisions, I’ve seen the truth reflected back to me in little brown eyes.
I don’t have it all together. I don’t know what I’m doing most of the time. But I love. And maybe that’s all there is.
That’s what you’ve shown me.
You’re not perfect parents, and honestly, I’m thankful for that. I’m thankful that you messed up, that you weren’t afraid to say ‘no,’ that you did things because you felt they were right. My own journey has been a lot of blazing my own trail, paving my own way. I’m letting my faith and heart guide me. I’m letting myself be led.
When I look back on my youth, there are significant moments I can’t forget: nights at the kitchen table playing board games, afternoons on the Illinois river, softball games across the state and you two by my side. You may have let me down, and I let you down more than once or twice. But your steadiness never wavered. Thank you.
I’m growing my own little family now—learning to be a support system, a caregiver, an authority figure and a friend. I’m learning that there are so many ways we can fail at this thing, but still, the people who love us will stay around us. And I see that in you.
Thank you for tirelessly fighting, for believing, and most importantly, for letting me have wings.
Thank you for being you.
Featured Image Credit: Marisa Donnelly