It's pretty natural in adolescent life to rebel, and therefore, the things your parents tell you seem trivial or meaningless. But for the most part, we've all been shown up one way or the other by sage words that we should have listened to in the first place.
Reddit user flyoverthemooon asked:
Here are some of the most inspiring answers.
When my dad was on his death bed with pancreatic cancer he wasn't allowed to talk. He fought and fought with the nurses so that they would let him say one word to my brother and I. He took off his oxygen mask, looked at us both, and said, "Hey."
It was hilarious. He was the best.
He lay there dying, and fought with nurses to give my brother and I a laugh on a day where our world was falling apart.
Happy Father's Day, Dad.JeanValdong
My dad passed away from cancer a few years ago. During his battle I was his sole caretaker. At 19 I was taking care of him, making sure our bills were paid, getting groceries, cooking, cleaning, setting up appointments, and the million other tasks that come with being someone's caretaker.
One day when I returned from running errands, my dad told me he forgot our electric bill was due that day. I casually told him that I had already run a check over while I was out and about. I remember he stopped what he was doing and just turned to look at me and said "You're going to be just fine when I'm gone". That was heartbreaking to think about, but comforting to know he saw my maturity and ability to handle everyday responsibilities. I hadn't felt I was ready to be on my own, but he helped me realize I would be just fine. 8 years later, and I am doing okay on my own, but man do I wish he was here. Happy father day dad. FluffyForce
When I was 12, nearly 13, my mum took me out on a dinner date to talk to me about puberty, and how much we might hate each other over the next few years.
As part of the evening, she said she had a gift for me. I was pretty super excited. She had teased that it was very special and something I would cherish. So, clearly I thought it would be a Sega Genesis, or maybe a pair of Reebok pumps (... 33 years old, still never had a pair and quite pissed about it).
Instead, she handed me the book "Love you forever" - you know, the children's book.
On the inside she had written "To my darling Jake, love mum. Always remember this".
She died yesterday after a 12 year battle with early onset dementia. I'll be getting "Always remember this" tattooed on my arm next week, traced from her handwriting.vingverm
I went to college about 5 hours away from where I grew up, and the first two years there I didn't have a car. My dad, who commuted probably 2+ hours a day (I grew up in Northern Virginia) every work day for a lot of his working life, drove down 5 hours to come pick me up so that I could come home for some holiday usually. This is when we would have our talks.
At the time I was a college sophomore struggling with what direction I wanted to go in terms of major and career. I've always been pretty intellectually capable but never had a career that just beckoned me, or made me feel passionate. But I went to college anyway, since that's what you're supposed to do if you have the money and the capability. As an upper middle-class millenial I now realize this is not an unusual feeling at all. I ended up majoring in history and anthropology.
My dad is a baby boomer who grew up dirt poor and worked at a 7-11 to get himself through college and law school. I just remember coming at him with a question about what I should pursue and he put it to me like this:
"Well, there's two ways. First you either you find something you love to do, or second find something you love and work to support it."
I took this in for a moment, and asked which one he did.
"I do the second one."
I asked what he was supporting, with the naievete only a 19-year-old can muster.
He chuckled. "You."
That just flipped my perspective on everything and made me feel a lot better about being sort of lost. I knew I'd figure it out, and that life would push me where I needed to go when I needed to go there.
He's still around. I should tell him.wiseass781
"i might not have given birth to you, but you are mine. You were mine from the day I met you. I loved you the second I saw you. Nobody can change that." This came from my stepmother a couple years ago. I met her when I was 13, and I'm almost 21 now.
It meant a lot because she was the first strong, consistent mother figure I ever had. She knows that was a nice thing to say, but i don't think she knows quite how much it meant to me. I don't think she will ever know how much I love and respect her for who she is. StormTheParade
This is really insignificant but made a big impact on my relationship with my mother. I was about 4 (I have a surprising amount of memories from when I was little) and I was coloring on one of those art easels for kids and my mom was cleaning the house. I asked her if I could draw on myself and she surprisingly said yes. So of course I took my markers and just went to town coloring my arms and stomach and legs. She came into the room to find me and flipped out that I had done this. I thought I was in big trouble so I started crying and I said "But you told me I could!" To which she responded, "You're right I did. I thought you meant on the paper though. That was my fault, let's get you cleaned up." And I wasn't in trouble at all. That was the day I realized adults aren't just there to punish you and that my mom was fair and understanding. To this day that's one of my favorite qualities of my mom and makes for a solid relationship. wrud4s
When I was little and my mother was still alive, her and my father seemed to always be getting into fights. Even after she was diagnosed with cancer, gone through multiple surgeries, and fought back her estimated date of death 5 years, was essentially braindead, and died, my father STILL harassed her. Besides calling her a stupid bitch and saying he hoped she would just die already, one memory of him really stuck with me.
One time during the summer, we had a storm and the power went out. My mother had just begun to enter her final stage of life, and was on an oxygen machine and bed ridden. She was unable to move, hear, see, or smell, but if she was conscious, she could still feel us. My father turned on the generator, but sent power to our basement (where he always smoked). Confused, we asked him why our mother's oxygen machine wasn't powered. "We have oxygen tanks, so i may as well enjoy myself."
We had one oxygen tank, with hardly enough air for two hours. It was for emergencies such as moving her to a hospital. Not wait for the power to come one, which, living in the country, would take days sometimes.
But the line that makes me look in the mirror everyday and do reality checks is before my mother was even diagnosed. I was 5, and at this point, I wasn't aware of all the fighting. I remember my mother walked into my room one day, and sat down on the bed with me. She asked me what I was doing, and I was playing Pokemon Fire Red, the first videogame she got me. She held my hand said that she loved me. "Please don't ever be like your father. Please respect women, and love your children. Know that I may not always be around, but I will always love you and support you. Even if I think you're wrong, I'll help you. But please, be different than your father."
As she lost her speech, the last words she spoke was to me. I walked out of the kitchen through her room to say goodnight (it was 12am). She grabbed my hand and lipped "sit down". I held her hand for what felt like an eternity when she finally managed to say the first thing in 3 days, and the last thing in her life.
"I feel so bad for you. I'm so sorry I'm leaving."
I love you mom. Awesomizer20
I'm a high strung person but when I was a child, my dad looked me dead in the eyes and said "be like the swan. They glide through the water and look calm and cool, but if you were to look below you'd see their feet frantically kicking. Don't let them see you sweat, but work hard." I didn't think it made an impact but people tell me often that I come off very organized and calm while inside my inner monologue is a constant scream. Thanks, dad! doremifasodone
"Be good to each other," was the last thing my father said to my mother and I before he went into the surgery from which he would eventually die. I think he meant for my mother and I to be good to each other, but I try to remember this every day and apply it to every interaction I have with people.
My father was the salt of the earth, a selfless man who was the perfect example of how to treat others, and I can only hope to lead my life based on his actions and words. Aldo24Flores
I have a good one! One of my first memories was the time I lied to my mom about something. She patiently explained why it was not good to lie and something people should never do. Later that evening the phone rang and my big sister ran to answer. My mom was watching tv or something and called from the other room "If that is [name I forgot] tell her I am at the store!" That was a bit of a WTF moment for me. weedful_things