7 Life Lessons From My Mother

I know everyone says that their Mum is special; mine really was. She was a mother to all, and we were lucky to have learnt a lot from her. Below are seven life lessons from my Mother.

Hustle (Do Something To Make A Living)

I can confidently say that my independent trait is attributed to my Mum. My siblings and I watched her hustle throughout her life. She always worked to get us everything we needed and ensured we never lacked. Most people formed an opinion of “rich kids” whenever they met us, only if they knew. I grew up with that spirit, and I’m glad I don’t have to depend on anyone for my bread.

You Are Stronger Than Anything Trying to Weigh You Down

My Mum is the strongest person I’ve ever known. She was firm yet soft when needed. She was a fighter, a doer and a go-getter. She was steadfast and resilient. She didn’t let anything deter her from getting ahead. And even when the blows came at her, she fought through them and stood up. She used to say, “te ba mo nkan to ju mi ti ri” which means “if you know what my eyes have seen”. She saw her challenging life experiences as part of her journey to becoming someone great. That attitude was so attractive, and now whenever I’m down, I pull onto it to bring me back up.

Give, No Matter How Little You Have

My Mum was a generous giver. She believed that when you give, you’ll receive, and she always said that we should do good for goodness’ sake. I doubt I will ever attain her level of generosity, but I’ve been trying to give more. I’ve learnt to give my time, energy, food, advice and resources to people who are and aren’t dear to me. Like her, I now believe that good attracts good too.

Don’t Expect Anything In Return

My Mum always said to give without expecting anything in return because people forget what you’ve done for them when you need them. She gave so much and got burned a couple of times, so she stopped relying on people. Whenever people showed up, she was grateful, but she never expected it. She always tried to instil this acceptance into all of us.

Let People Know When They Hurt You

Unlike me, my Mum was a woman with many words. She was quick to anger but also quick to forgive. She never knew how to let things go without saying her piece. No matter how much we tried to tell her to just forget it, she always still said her mind before moving on. I think this is a healthier way to handle situations instead of keeping everything in and bursting one day.

Always Leave A Room Better Than You Met It

My Mum loved to clean and keep things tidy. She never compelled us to be like her, but somehow, I became exactly like her. I often find myself tidying up spaces that aren’t even mine. When I go to the bathroom, I clean it up after use for the next person. I also do this for my personal space and every shared space. Recently on my birthday, my friends still teased me like they usually do about my “cleaning cleaning” ways.

Family is Everything

My Mum was close to her family, and at every point in time, there was always one Aunty or Uncle living with us or that we needed to talk to or visit. She was close to her extended family as if they were her nuclear family. We couldn’t even tell which Aunty was a step relation because she was close to them all. My Mum raised her children to be very close to each other. My siblings are my best friends, and our love for each other is real and limitless. Realizing that this love can exist has propelled me not to settle for less in my other relationships because I know my family is always there at the end of the day.

I miss you Mama, thanks for teaching us these remarkable life lessons.

Mariam Shittu

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