My Role Models

On Monday I am going to recap my Spring Cleaning to-do list, but Monday is also my parents’ 29th anniversary. Keeping with the theme, Sunday is Father’s Day. My parents aren’t super keen onΒ appearing on my blog, but today I’m going to talk about them.

My family has always consisted of Mom, Dad, Fred, and myself (plus a sprinkle of pets). As children, Fred and I knew that we were lucky to have parents that were married to one another. A lot of my brother’s friends had divorced parents and he fretted about it. (I remember he once got upset because Mom & Dad disagreed on a TV station.) Never once in my +25 years have I worried about my parents splitting up.

Family 1

When I was younger if you’d have asked me who my hero(s) was I probably would’ve drawn a blank. For the most part I didn’t idolize anyone. Or at least I didn’t think I did.

It’s stupid that it took me years to realize that my parents are two of the best people in my life. Until recently, my parents weren’t my friends. Until recently, they didn’t want to be my friends. They wanted to be teachers and counselors and guides- but not my friends. When I became an adult that changed.

I was a mouthy teenager. I was much kinder to my dad than my mom. I was moody and anxious and secretive. Those were crappy years for Mom. But they never, ever told me not to hang out with people. They never told me to quit an activity or class or project. They welcomed our friends and always provided food or shelter or love to the kids (and pets) that Fred and I brought home. They drove me from A to B and celebrated when I got my license and cheered when I graduated from high school and worried a little but also beamed with joy when K asked me out. Despite all that, they often got the nasty, hurtful, scowling side of me.

But something changed when I graduated college. Our relationship shifted. A veil of angst was lifted and I could clearly see everything they’d done for me (and Fred) over the course of my life. And I realized that all my habits and thoughts and manners and wisdom were a direct product of their parenting.

Mom once told me that she tells Dad everything. She said they keep my secrets as a couple, but she won’t keep things from my dad- they parent together. I also watched them plant gardens together and travel together and talk about money together. And after a few years of my own marriage I realize that I model our marriage on my mom and dad. K knows everything about me and we can do anything together. I have so much respect for him and I take pride in his accomplishments- just like my parents do with one another.

(C)Ryan Armbrust Sniper Photo LLC
(C)Ryan Armbrust Sniper Photo LLC

The relationship I have with Mom and Dad couldn’t have existed when I was younger. Their roles were different; my attitude and behavior was different. I appreciate the traveling and the chores and the restrictions they implemented when I was young. And I now appreciate the confidence and love and support and friendship they offer now.

I look forward to calling Mom on a Saturday morning and asking if she wants run errands with me or see a movie. K and my dad go to lunch together and work on projects or vehicles alongside one another. Sometimes they call one another to chat. We spend Saturday nights in their backyard around a fire with my parents and their friends. The shift from ward to friend was seamless. I don’t even know when it happened.

So in honor of Father’s Day, I just wanted to say that my dad and mom are incredible at parenting. They really were (and are) amazing at being “mom” and “dad.” And in honor of their 29th anniversary, my parents are role models. I didn’t know it for the longest time, but they really have raised me to be the woman, adult, wife, and friend that I am. I am so grateful to be their daughter.

On a different note, Happy Birthday to my soon-to-be-sister, Christina
and to our 5 yearold husky-bear, Lylee!

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22 thoughts on “My Role Models

  1. This is a beautiful tribute to your parents. Even if they don’t like being on your blog, I’m sure they will appreciate the way that you appreciate them. I feel the same way about mine. Looking back, the stability, love, and roots that they gave me were so solid. I didn’t appreciate it at the time, but I do now. I’m so glad that they are more like my friends now that I am older and that they put up with me through my crazy teenage years.

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    1. Fortunately, they both let me know that this was an ok way to mention them, haha. My mentality about my parents (and everything in life) is definitely different at age 25!

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  2. oh my goodness – i am all sorts of teary eyed over this post. what really got me was that your mom said she won’t keep secrets from your dad but it will stay between them as a couple. i love that. i a lot. i’m tearing up again. we seems similar in how we responded to our moms vs. dads growing up (though my parents got divorced when i was 6). what a beautiful tribute to your parents!

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    1. Thanks, Chelsea! That always frustrated me about her sharing stuff with him (because sometimes I got in trouble twice, haha), but now that I’m married I understand πŸ™‚

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  3. This gives me all the feels – especially the picture of you & your dad.
    A father/daughter dance makes me tear up every time anyways.
    You are so right – its funny how relationships with parents change as you become your own adult – especially a married one. Such a special relationship to have

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    1. When I was younger my dad & I used to go camping with a group of fathers/daughters from the YMCA and my mom would get jealous, so during the father/daughter dance I had my brother bring my mom out to dance, too πŸ™‚ You can kind of see them in the background!

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    1. Ha, I think there’s some good and bad that comes with that realization, but as far as parenting and relationships go, it’s mostly good with my mom and dad πŸ™‚

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  4. This was such a beautiful post! I guess we don’t realize the impact that our parents have on our lives until we’ve reached a certain level of maturity. But as adolescents/teenagers, it’s inevitable that sometimes we’re rebellious, inquisitive, or even moody. My mother was so strict and hard on me and we didn’t have the best relationship at all. Although I feel like she could have went about things differently, when I look back I truly appreciate how hard she pushed me. Unfortunately, she died when I was only 19 so I didn’t get to experience a friendly bond, but I’m more than sure we would have had a great one.

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    1. Thank you, Shannon. I’m sorry to hear about your mom 😦 I think it’s really interesting how relationships change and mature and improve. I’m sure she’s watching over you and ridiculously proud of you now! And you have the maturity and wisdom to know that much of her guidance is what helped you get this far in life πŸ™‚

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