On Who I Look Like

People tell me all of the time that I look like my mom.

It happens regularly; walking through the grocery store, meeting up with relatives, talking to strangers in the mall, chatting among ourselves, or even just minding our own business. The compliment never catches me off guard anymore, and sometimes when we are dressed in the same color or same style of outfit, I expect it to happen at least a handful of times!
It’s a normal compliment that a lot of people get, especially young women.
When my mom and I stand together, I would say we do resemble each other. We both have blue eyes that change color, from deep sea blue to light sky blue, depending on the weather and our level of emotion. Darker blue on the colder, sadder days, and lighter blue with happiness and sunshine. We both have blonde hair that you can’t look past; especially myself, with probably the brightest natural blonde color you’ve ever seen. My mom and I both stand around five and a half feet tall. We both have loud voices that dominate conversation, carrying from the other side of the room. My mom and I are both sassy, and we both have a spit fire tongue.

My mom is a strong woman. She doesn’t let others make her judgement, decide how she feels, or choose what she thinks. My mom doesn’t put up with drama, with hatred, with tension, or with childish activity from adults. My mom demands respect, and she gets exactly that. My mom faces problems head on, tackling them like a lion, and solving them with perfect grace and charm.

The funny thing is, the person that I call mom, didn’t give birth to me (I think she’s thankful for this, I was a ten pound baby!). She may have known me since I was two, but she didn’t know what she was in for when I was only that young. Because at 23 years old, my amazing mother took over a job where nobody else had even tried, spending countless nights of yelling, crying, trying to understand, talking, protecting, thinking, worrying, and loving, loving, loving.

I am the first person to admit that I have given my beautiful mother a hell of a time. From self-harm, to an abusive past, to mental illness, to being a teenager, to betrayal, to learning how to make decisions, and everything else in between, I know I was not an easy child to raise. But God, am I thankful that she took over, that she gave me her grace and patience, and that she raised me so well. I truly believe that God puts people who need each other together, and this is just one example of His love and power over us!

There are certain things that I will be eternally thankful to my mom for. She is the first person in my life who brought me to Christ and taught me who He is and how wonderful His work is. My mom gave me the blessing of being the big sister of four beautiful children who I love with my whole heart. My mom gave me grandparents that are irreplaceable and wonderful. My mom taught me selfless love and the beauty that is being a women in this world.

Life has taught me the hard but beautiful lesson that family isn’t always blood, it’s the people in your life who want you in theirs; the ones who accept you for who you are. The ones who would do anything to see you smile, and those who love you no matter what. Being genetically related is not the only thing that makes people family. It’s about…

Love, support, trust, sacrifice, honesty, protection, acceptance, security, compromise, gratitude, respect, and loyalty

And at the very end of the day, Ohana means family, and family means nobody gets left behind, or forgotten.

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