“My dear departed mother had a lot of sayings. One that stayed with me all my life is: All you have is yourself. My mom worked hard to raise three children on her own after divorcing my father. I grew up not expecting anyone to help me. That was good, for I found muself in a divorce situation and having to raise two children on my own. I did it thanks to my faith, and my mom.”
— Patricia, Norfolk, Va.
“No matter how much you love your husband or partner in life always maintain your financial independence.”
–Lynn, De Land, Fla.
Save Early and Often
“My mother Carol taught me the importance of saving at an early age. Instead of spending monetary gifts as soon as I received them, I proudly deposited birthday and Christmas checks in my savings account and watched my balance grow. Mom also taught me how to be a smart consumer. She carefully researched big purchases and rarely made impulse buys. And boy, could my mom clip coupons! I learned how to budget by watching her get the most out of every dollar she earned.”
“Thanks to these lessons, my mother prepared me for the biggest challenge of my adult life. I’m one of the many Americans without a full-time job. Thankfully, I have a healthy savings account, a modest stock portfolio, and a growing IRA. I don’t feel panicked, because I’ve been patiently saving for these rainy days. Mom gave me an invaluable financial compass. Thanks to her, I know I can find my way to financial security. Happy Mother’s Day, Mom.” — Christine, Chicago, Ill.
Have a Plan & Go For It!
“She said: The worst that they can say is `No.’ In other words, there’s no harm in asking. Whether it’s for a deal on your shopping purchases, a raise, or a dream job, you should always ask for it.” –Megan, San Jose, Calif.
“Age is never a reason not to do something! If you don’t go back to school for your master’s degree because you’ll be 30 before you graduate, the alternative is not that you’ll stay 26 if you stay out of school. Either you’ll be 30 with a degree or without! That’s your choice.” –Sheila, Villanova, Pa.
“Failure to plan is knowingly planning to fail.” –Lynn, De Land, Fla.
Stand Your Ground
“Blood isn’t thicker than water. If your relationship with your family is toxic, the healthiest thing you can do is take care of yourself and not get dragged down by your family’s drama. My mom taught me the importance of standing your ground, even with people you love.” –K.M., Pasco, Wash.
Never Give Up
“My mother always said, ‘If you want to be a doormat, lay down.’ No matter what life sends my way, I know I have the ability and resources within myself to manage outcomes. That comes from a lifetime of having the unflinching backing of my mom, knowing that she was always in my corner cheering me on and giving me the confidence and space to fight my own battles. My mom is 86 now and fighting her own battles with dementia, so it’s my turn to be her supporter as I also watch and learn from her how to age gracefully. Never giving up, always going on.” –Mary Jo, Chicago, IL.
What life lessons have you shared with your children? (Or would you like to share if you had kids?)