Thank You Mom

As a family memory-keeper, I have an interest in looking to the past in helping to shape the stories I share today. I enjoy comparing the past and the present and bringing together stories from yesterday with those of today. The connections between generations are of particular importance to me.

I think of my Mom often during theses early years of raising my kids (a boy age 8 & a girl age 1). I think about what her life was like when she was in her 30’s, the choices she made, the attitude and faith she possessed (and continues to share today). I think about the things she cooked, the hours she spent in the car driving us here and there, the sacrifices she likely made for things she might have wanted in her life, the unconditional love she has always given. I think about how lucky I am that she is my Mom and that I still have her here to tell her how much I love her.

I’ve been lucky to see her connect deeply with my son – a boy with autism who loves fiercely and is fiercely loved. He adores her and my father.

With the birth of my daughter, I find myself reflecting even more specifically on the Mother/Daughter relationship. I find myself hoping that I will be able to cultivate a relationship with Anna in the same loving manner my Mom has with me.

Reaching out and saying thank you to your Mom is really as simple as beginning with a three word prompt, “Thank you for…” and then filling in the blank. So often in this life we attempt to make things much more complicated than the need to be. We get mixed up in the layers of time and hurt and happiness. We forget that a simple thank you can mean so very much.

Here’s what I’d like to thank my Mom for today:

Thank you for teaching me how to make the best popcorn: cooked in a pan on the stovetop in oil. Big bowls of goodness that I now regularly make for my own kids.

Thank you for sharing some of the challenges you’ve had in your life. For entrusting me with your feelings both happy and sad.

Thank you for being a model of the power of prayer.

Thank you for instilling in me the importance of naps and rest.

Thank you for being a model of forgiveness and moving forward.

Thank you for listening to me share my own challenges as a working Mom.

Thank you for being proud of me and encouraging me to find my own place professionally.

Thank you for loving my children and me so completely and unconditionally.

Mom, when I kiss my kids on the top of their heads I often think of you and say a prayer of thanksgiving for you and all that you have brought to my life.

This post was inspired by Procter & Gamble’s Thank You Mom Reunions contest, that offers adult children the opportunity to give their mom a heartfelt “Thank You” and a chance to win $1000 for a special trip to reconnect with mom. I am participating in P&G's Thank You Mom campaign in conjunction with

Interested in being inspired to tell stories that connect the past and present? Check out my 12-week online workshop Yesterday & Today at Big Picture Classes.

55 thoughts

  1. erin vega

    2010-11-15 11:28:40 -0500

    is that your grandmother on the left?? she is anna's twin!

  2. terri

    2010-11-15 11:38:51 -0500

    Your words are really emotional for me. I hope I have that connection with my daughters. But I can't seem to have it with my Mother. I love her dearly but the words can't come out to tell her.

  3. Lindsay Teague

    2010-11-15 13:52:32 -0500

    Ali, my mom died a few weeks ago, suddenly. I wish I had done this more for her. Great post.


  4. Michelle

    2010-11-15 14:10:46 -0500

    My mom takes care of my boys after school so that I can work and do what I love! It's a blessing to have moms that love us and our kids, isn't it?
    I'm going to give her a huge hug when I see her today. Thanks for reminding me how important that lady really is!

  5. creole wisdom

    2010-11-15 14:12:19 -0500

    It is evident that you have a wonderful, fantastic mother. I think it's really amazing- the power of mothers. :)

  6. Stephanie George

    2010-11-15 14:21:15 -0500

    So well written Ali. Makes me wish I knew your mom! Also makes me even more thankful for mine. :)

  7. Peggy McDevitt

    2010-11-15 14:22:03 -0500

    Ihave tears in my eyes as I don't have a mother to thank as she has passed on. I would love to write her today and say what you just wrote as it's true of my mother also. I shall look upward and say a prayer. Love your style Ali, you do know what's important in life. Anna looks so much like you and I'm sure you'll have a great realtionship with her because your "real".

  8. Amanda

    2010-11-15 14:24:16 -0500


  9. Andrea

    2010-11-15 14:55:54 -0500

    So wonderful! I am the mother of 3 (two girls). Highly recommend reading "A Mother's Hope" and "A Daughter's Dream" by Francine Rivers. These two books will change how you love, raise, and encourage your daughter.

  10. cinback

    2010-11-15 15:18:54 -0500

    My mom is my best friend. I cannot express how lucky I feel to have such a close relationship with her. My favorite moments currently, is when she comes for a visit and we sit in my living room sipping tea side by side, looking at magazines and discussing our dreams and inspirations.

  11. Janell

    2010-11-15 15:43:52 -0500

    I just lost my mom in September, and I still can't talk about it without getting choked up. She was the center of our huge, loving family, and it's been a difficult time.

    I'm gathering my thoughts, ideas and supplies to make a book of memories of her. It's taking me awhile because it's still so raw.

    Thanks for your constant inspiration....

  12. abbie

    2010-11-15 16:03:17 -0500

    major family resemblance! wow.

    Such a sweet post.

  13. kat-in-texas

    2010-11-15 18:11:22 -0500

    Ali, this is a heart-felt post of a beautiful relationship. Your mother seems like such a warm, nurturing person.

    I am blessed to have such a mother as well--completely unselfish, living for her children and grandchildren with unwaivering faith.

    I always say, I wish I could be a tenth of my mother...

  14. Jenny B

    2010-11-15 19:38:04 -0500

    A wonderful post, Ali. I lost my mom five years ago and I've been thinking about her a lot lately. She would have turned 73 years old this coming Sunday. Reading your post reminds me to put more energy towards remembering the many blessings my mom has brought to my life and my family instead of dwelling on my feelings of loss.

  15. Pam

    2010-11-15 20:02:20 -0500

    Absolutely beautiful! Thank you.

  16. elizabeth*s*

    2010-11-15 20:03:02 -0500

    Such a heartfelt beautiful post. I'm blessed to have a wonderful mother!!! Not sure where I'd be without her. And am blessed that my children ADORE her as much as I do!

  17. jessica

    2010-11-15 20:12:08 -0500

    love this Ali.
    we are so lucky to have mama.
    and we are so lucky to be mamas.
    love you!

  18. Becky H

    2010-11-15 20:59:53 -0500

    I cried! When my daughter was a baby (she is now 21) I would sit and tell her I Love You. One day my mom asked me if I remembered her telling me and my brothers that she loved us. (My father died when I was 3 and she was 29 with 3 kids under 8) I told her to always believe that we as children knew she loved us all feircely and unconditionally. This post made me remember that day and that I am thankful a few weeks ago I mail her and my stepfather a note to say how I am so thankful that they are in my life and for helping me and my family thru the years. Thank you.


  19. Alison Day

    2010-11-16 01:21:12 -0500

    Beautiful and heartfelt Ali.
    Thank you.

    My Mum (and Dad) died when I was 14 and not a day goes by when I don't think of her and wonder what she would think of my 3 girls. I wish she were around to share stories of me as a little girl so I could see if MY little girls do similar things now.
    I have been blessed with a second Mom (and Dad) who loves me very much and who I love very much also. She is wonderful with my daughters and I am grateful for her everyday. Will strive to tell her more frequently what she means to me! Thanks for this.

  20. Karen

    2010-11-16 05:25:22 -0500

    Love this post, Ali. My mom completely surprised me when I moved into temp housing for my new job (with just my clothes until my goods arrived 2 months later) when she sent me a care package of scrap supplies and a few photos of me and my hubby. She wrote a great note and told me to keep the creative juices flowing. It was just the thing ai needed to keep me from doubting the changes our family was making!

  21. ale

    2010-11-16 06:16:52 -0500

    so beautiful, ali. this post brings tears to my eyes and a smile to my face.

  22. Verona H

    2010-11-16 20:43:06 -0500

    I am thankful that your mother has such an influence on Simon and I know is a big help in his life. How fortunate you are to have such a relationship with her. She also has a beautiful daughter! Thanks for your inspiration.

  23. gilroygal

    2010-11-17 14:26:44 -0500

    Having just lost my mother about a month ago, your post brought tears to my eyes as well. I am thankful that I had a chance on many occasions to tell her how much I loved her and how thankful I was for the mother she was to me. As a matter of fact, for her Celebration of Life ceremony, I used your journaling prompt "I want to remember..." as the basis for what I wanted to say. Thank you for helping me share my special memories.

  24. Debbie S.

    2010-11-19 10:09:32 -0500

    Beautiful. And now I want to know the recipe for stove-top popcorn!

  25. Chris

    2010-11-21 13:01:04 -0500

    Ali, this is such a beautiful post, I bet your Mom loved it! Thank you for sharing.

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