"When I screwed up in college and moved back home, my mom made me pay rent and tuition on my own. Best lesson I ever learned! I don’t need anyone financially. I can do it on my own, with hard work. Love you, Mom!"
"While always my supporter, my mom did not let me sulk in my disappointments. After a time of letting me grieve, she would let me know it was time to move on. 'You can’t focus on what you can’t change,' she’d say. 'What are you doing next?' Whether moving on meant picking up a broken heart or realizing that maybe something I had worked so hard for was not what I had expected, she let me know it wasn’t the end of the world—there was more out there waiting for me."
—Elizabeth, North Arlington
"Once you commit to a sport, team, group, project, or event, you see it to the end to the best of your ability. This was something my mother taught me, and something I pass down to my children. It builds strength and character, and while my children may not appreciate it now (much like I didn’t back then), they will come to understand as they grow older."
—Cristina, East Windsor
"My mom always said, 'I’m doing the best I can, are you doing the best you can?'"
"During my traditional 1970s upbringing, the opportunities for maternal mentoring came in quiet moments, with little to no elaboration—through example. Patience, perseverance, and a willingness to create resources (time and attention more than financial) seemed to be a given. There was never a question of their availability, and today I strive to do the same for my children."
"When in a bind, stop and ask yourself, 'How can I figure this out? Who can I ask for help? How can I do this?' I listen to both my children verbalize this train of thought, and nothing makes a psychologist-mom’s heart sing more!"
"My mom told me to stop watching everyone do the things I wanted to do. The person who took the risk, reaped the rewards. I have never let an opportunity pass me by as a result. This year my son tried for an enrichment club and student council, he didn’t make it on to either. Then he tried out for the school play and got a leading role. He learned, as I have, that you won’t win them all, but if you don’t try you won’t win any."
—Sarah, North Brunswick
"Every time I skinned my knee, my mom demanded I look at it so I could see what was going on and treat it. The lesson: Face your problems head on, understand them, and only then will you be able to deal with them."
"My mother always remindedme about the hardships that my grandparents endured as immigrants to America. The only resources they had were determination to succeed, a good work ethic, an attitude of gratitude, and the ability to be creative and good towards others. I remind my children on a daily basis that with all of the wonderful resources we are now blessed to have, there is nothing that we can’t achieve."
"My mom always taught me to not feel sorry for myself and that life goes on. I appreciate this lesson and always keep it moving!"
"My mom use to always say 'when one door closes another will open'…I pass that on to my children. I want them to realize things don’t always work out the way we want them to. The goal is to keep trying."