I've recently been thinking about all the things my mom did for me when I was younger. There were a lot of things that at the time I was unaware were major sacrifices for her.
1. Waking up to take me to early morning seminary every morning. This was EARLY - like we had to leave at 5:45 kind of early. And I didn't really realize how tired she must have been, because I was so focused on how tired I was. I'm grateful to her, however, because going to study holy scriptures before school each day made me a stronger person and brought me closer to the Savior. (Oh, and did I mention that we lived 20-25 minutes away from the church, so she had to drive close to an hour, get ready for work, and then spend the whole day working with elementary school kids, only to come home to do all the cooking, cleaning, dishes, and other motherly duties? Only to wake up at 5 am to read her own scriptures and get ready for the day. Ok, I think I just passed out from exhaustion just thinking about it.)
2. Every month, the youth from the surrounding area would get together and have a dance from 7-10. I LOVED going to dances, and was happy to be able to go. My mom would take me before I got a drivers' license. (And maybe afterwards, too. My mind's a bit foggy.) Often, my friends would invite me to go with them to get ice cream or something afterwards. I would always beg my mom, and sometimes I would get to go. This was super duper exciting to me, and I had a blast. I was thinking about this the other day, and realized that that poor woman had to drive me (I can't remember, but I would guess it took 30-45 minutes to get to the Stake Center) to the dance, sit around for 3 hours (after spending a tiring day taking care of her family, plus fulfilling all of her church callings), and then would often wait around while I hung out with my friends. I imagine the last thing she wanted to do was sit around and be bored while I spent MORE time hanging out with my friends. But because she loved me, because she was my mom, and because of her kindness, she did it. And it means more to me now than it ever did 15-16 years ago.
Not every sacrifice was of the shuttle-bus variety. Sometimes it was waking up with me in the middle of the night while I told her my scary dream. (Which I completely made up by the way. Totally untrue. I just wanted to talk to her. Don't judge- I was 7. :) ) She sat with me and tried (effortlessly) to help me not freak out about my math homework. She made me meals she knew I would like. She hugged me, and made me feel like I was an important part of her life. She had six children, but I never once felt like I was lost in the midst of them. I always knew that I could count on her.
And I still do. And I love her more now than I ever did. Thanks, Mom. I love you.