Let's admit it. Relationship with our mothers is complex and often multi-layered.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on October 17, 2019. It has since been updated.
As an adult, many of us look back at our childhood and realize that we really don't give our mothers enough credit for raising us the way they did. Let's admit it. The relationship with our mothers is complex and often multi-layered. There are times you cannot believe you were born from her, and there are times you silently thank life for having her around.
One of the greatest gifts a mom can give a child is a sense of safety and a healthy sense of self-worth. Knowing you have someone who's got your back can go a long way. And when we become moms ourselves is when we realize the amount of effort and heart she put into creating a good life for you. The journey you share with your mom is unique, the depth of which only you two will understand. But the emotional journey shouldn't be the only one you take with your mother.
Here are five reasons why you need to take a trip with your mom every year:
From being a tantrum-throwing toddler to a troubled teen, you have been through it all as you the child and your mom, well the parent. Now is finally the time to relate to each other as friends, as two equal adults. As a mother, she had tons of responsibilities raising you, but now that you've moved on to your own life, you're able to see her as more than just a mother. You see her as a woman—kind, giving, and strong. When you do go on a trip with her, even if a short one, you get to see this side of her more, beyond the role of a parent. This can lead to a deeper emotional bonding, especially when you both experience new sights, people, places, and cultures together.
All those trips to the beach, the ice cream store, the carnivals will remain forever etched in your memory. If your mom was one of those who made sure she did her best to give you as many happy moments and experiences—despite the financial or emotional constraints at that time—taking a trip with her will give you a chance to make her smile and laugh like a child again. She is the one who kissed your tears away or came out with random stories just to get you to sleep on time. So even taking a one day trip will give you a chance to show her a good time. If she enjoys history, you could take her to a museum. Or, if she loves flowers and nature, a visit to a park in a new town will give you a chance to see the look of pure delight on her face. You won't even have to say the words, but she'll know that you love her and care enough to gift her this new experience.
If you recollect, most precious memories with your mom are likely to be that of your childhood. It's because early memories make a lasting imprint on the brain. But not all of us have had perfect childhoods. There might have also been moments your mom and you didn't agree on things, and either or both of you could have been hurting. Which is why creating new memories is important. Even if you did have a perfect childhood, making sure you both connect as two grown-ups — rather than annoying toddler/teen with overwhelmed mom —helps rebuild a healthy bond.
Chores, deadlines, work meetings, managing kids, distracted husbands, bills—life can be overwhelming with the mundane to-do lists. If you're a mom yourself, then you know just how exhausting it is as a parent. Your mom has been through it all and you both deserve a break from the men, the kids, and the chatter of your household to see a new place. When you choose to do a trip, even a weekend getaway to a neighboring town, you both get a chance to be free of all the responsibilities and stress. Both of you know how to take care of yourselves, as you always have been doing, now you get to unwind and focus on each other. Not only does your body get a break, but connecting with your mom will nourish your mind and soul.
Sadly enough, we all have to face the harsh reality that as we get older, so do our parents. Life is uncertain, and we cannot control the bigger scheme of things. What you can control though is letting your loved ones know that they are loved and make sure they have a great time when they are still around. Every moment counts. Every smile, every laugh, every tear, and every second of happiness count. Going on a trip will allow you to create these happy moments, which will become lifelong memories of the bond you shared with your mom. And she will get to feel light, carefree, and happy, much like a child again.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the writer.