My mother is one of the most incredible people to which I can say I am related. She wins the award every year for most likely to tell you when you're being too selfish, settling for less than you deserve, making a dumb decision, or when you're doing all three at the same time (and she will proceed to prove how that's possible). She is right 99% of the time. And even though I only follow her advice roughly 70% of the time, she still openly provides it.
My mom lives by the motto "I'm not your best friend; I'm your mother." As I started getting older and we started to have a more adult relationship, I wanted to argue otherwise. I mean, she tells me when my lipstick is tacky, we laugh about what people in Walmart are wearing (or worse, what people think they can wear when they aren't at Walmart), we share stories, shoes, and clothes (some of which I don't think she always enjoys sharing, yet she does). I think somewhere along the line my mother seemed like a best friend, but I think it only seems that way not because she actually is a best friend, but because she's the best kind of mother.
She saves you when you need saving, but makes sure that you first try to save yourself. She won't help you with your homework until you've tried all of the other problems first because she wants you to know that one bout of discouragement shouldn't keep you from doing the best that you can. She doesn't rush to the store to buy your favorite food when you come home to visit because she taught you enough about independence that you've probably been eating it the whole time you were away. She treats you and all of your siblings equally, but not the same, and by the time you're old enough to recognize there is a difference you will also understand why she does it.
I have heard some of my mother's stories. I have been an eyewitness to many of her trials with which God has challenged her. And each and every time she approached them with such bravery and determination. I am sure she had moments of weakness, as we all do, but in the end she has been victorious and I could not be more proud to call someone of her character my mother. She isn't superhuman, just an amazing and beautifully flawed individual. She loves me, and whether or not we have always been able to get along there was never a doubt in my mind about that.
Happy Mother's Day, Mom!