friendship

"A cheese platter is a perfectly acceptable meal": 7 women share the best piece of advice they got from their mum.

ME Bank
Thanks to our brand partner, ME Bank

When I became a mum for the first time, I remember people telling me that you will get advice from every human and their dog. 

But you only need to take on the bits that feel most like you. 

Naturally, there was a lot of noise during this period from well-meaning friends and curious colleagues. There was always that one person who would give me their quiet two-bob's worth that just, well, connected. That person was my own mum. 

Around Mother’s Day, I often find myself reflecting on my relationship with my mum and everything we have been through together.

Image: Supplied.

Mothers are often our guiding influence, there to help us make good decisions, reminding us to take care of ourselves as well as look after others. So many of our sparkly qualities are shaped by the mothers and leading women in our lives.

Having two daughters of my own, I now know more than ever that we need to create a world filled with love, support and kindness. Not only for others, but for ourselves too. After all, doing good feels good.

ME Bank is the perfect example of this. They’ve been doing it for 18 years with their sponsorship of the Mother’s Day Classic, which, this year, is celebrating its 25th anniversary – continuing its support of the National Breast Cancer Foundation

One in seven Australian women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. 

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The Mother’s Day Classic, held on Sunday May 8, supports and honours these women with a fun run (or walk!) around the Botanical Gardens in Melbourne and The Domain in Sydney, as well as up to 70 locations across the country. The event raises much needed awareness and funds for Australian breast cancer research.

ME's continuous support for such a great cause got me thinking about all of the wonderful support many of us have received over the years, especially from the leading women in our circles. 

So, in celebration of Mother’s Day, and the incredible women who enhance our lives, I reached out to some in my own community with one question: what is the best advice your mum has ever given you?

Here's exactly what they said. 

Ashling

"My mum has always been really independent. She’s worked hard her whole life and with two girls, it’s always been really important to her that we understand our worth and ability to contribute to society.

"She has always told us it’s important to have a job we love and make our own money on our own terms – to find something that we enjoy doing, make sure we are paid fairly, and to always recognise the importance of saving. Never rely on anyone else to make you feel secure; you own that responsibility.

"And the words she lives by are 'sleep when you’re dead'. Have fun and enjoy yourself. But don’t fall short on your responsibilities. Stayed out too late? Drank to too much? Hungover and have to go to work? 'Suck it up, cream puff!'"

Image: Supplied.

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Casey

"'Tits to the wind, Case' is what my mum would say to me every time I went into something scary or appeared to be feeling down. It reminded me to keep my head up high, shoulders back and to always hold my chest out proudly.

"My mum always told my brother and I as kids that she will always love us no matter what sexuality we are – straight, bi, gay – and the most important thing is that we are happy and safe. Not everyone else in the world feels like this though so when I got my first girl crush, her words had never rang truer. I held my head high and ran to tell the only person in the world I wanted to tell in that moment: my mum — my best friend."

Image: Supplied.

Emily

"My mum’s a banker and the piece of advice she constantly tells my sister and I is to always be financially independent. She is a huge believer of independent stability and says that no matter what our future holds to always remember to look out for ourselves first. 

"Because of her profession, I’m well educated on my current finances as well as my potential future economic situation. Having a mum that cares so much about women rising in the workforce and demanding a seat at the table has helped me so much in my career and how I approach my next step."

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Aleisha

"My husband and I spent many years struggling with infertility and my mum would often be on the other end of my tearful phone calls after another unsuccessful round of IVF.

"One evening during one of these calls, she cleared her throat and uncomfortably shared her advice: ‘you need to try different sex positions, Leish’. She then dove into providing information about a number of positions and how long I should keep my legs in the air after sex. 

"It was the most cringey conversation of my life but sums up the beautiful woman and parent that my mum truly is. Even though it was super awkward for her, she just wanted to do whatever possible to help me and my husband create a family. It’s the essence of parenting and who she is – doing whatever you can to help no matter what."

Image: Supplied.

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Jessica

"My nan was one of the most prominent female figures in my life growing up and she wished for nothing more than for my mum and me to be as close as the two of them were.

"Whenever Mum and I had a disagreement, Nan would always pull me aside and say ‘Jess, your mum will always be your best friend’. She knew that hormones and the teenage years could often get in the way of showing my mum the appreciation and respect she deserved. She needed me to understand that my mum was only ever loving me. 

"Now that Nan has left us and I’ve grown up, these words ring true in my head every time I’m finding parenthood with my own daughter a little challenging. I hear her words and let my daughter know that I love her, I appreciate her and that I’ll always be there to support her. For now, I am her best friend but for me, she’ll always be mine."

Image: Supplied.

Taryn

"My mum and I don’t see eye to eye on everything but there are a couple of pieces of advice she has given me that will stick.

"Firstly, before you buy anything, ask yourself: do you need this or want this? If it’s a want, work out if you can afford it. The exception to the rule is a holiday — holidays are essential and should be taken often. 

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"Secondly, a hot shower fixes everything. Whether you got caught in the rain, have a snotty nose or you’re just having a bad day, go have a shower!

"Lastly, and this is the one I will hold dearest to my heart, a cheese platter is a perfectly acceptable meal. Especially when paired with wine."

Image: Supplied.

Rikki

And as for me, coming from a very modest upbringing, making smart money choices has always been of great importance to my mum (and my dad). She has always emphasised that no matter who you are or where you come from, you have the opportunity to make a wonderful life for yourself. But never at the expense of others.

This lifelong advice has always been the driving force behind many decisions I have made including career changes, moving towns and having children. 

But most of all, the importance of supporting others and how a little bit of kindness can go a long way.

Do some good this Mother's Day and follow in ME's footsteps by supporting the Mother's Day Classic for its 25th Anniversary on Sunday, May 8. 

Whether you want to soak up the fun event day atmosphere at a major or metro city event, join a community-focused local event, or participate at your own time and place, there’s an option for everyone. Find out more here and register for the event.

Feature Image: Supplied/Mamamia.

ME Bank
Hi, it’s ME! If you need an introduction, we’re the bank that’s been Making Money Good since 1994. With good rates, good returns and a few good deeds, too. Like supporting the Mother’s Day Classic for the past 18 years (happy anniversary to us). This year, we’re bringing our support of Aussie musos to the Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane events, because we know music does the world of good. So come run, dance and donate to the National Breast Cancer Foundation on Sunday 8 May. Hope to see you there – love, ME.