Next month we will be celebrating our mothers. On Mother’s Day we thank them for raising us, caring for us and being there for us with gifts, hugs and sometimes tears. This year, instead of just telling mom how great she is in person, The Explorer is looking for you to tell thousands of people just how you feel about your mom. Through the “What makes your mom great?” contest, we are taking essays and will be handing out prizes for that special day. 

Even though it’s a month early, I will start things off because like many of you, I believe my mom is the best. I say that because I’m not the only one who believes it, but I am one of those who is lucky enough to say I am her only daughter, as I had three older brothers.

You see, my mom had three children, but she has raised probably 20 or more. When she was a young mom, starting out with my two older brothers and pregnant with me, her mom died and she took in her four siblings, the youngest being seven years old. I now refer to him as my oldest brother.

Over the years, she has helped raise my cousins, other family members and friends.

My mom has devoted her life to children, and she is the one I call when I am sad, when I’ve had a bad day and when I have great news. I want her to know first.

In thinking about why my mom is the best, besides the fact that she’s had a hand in raising so many others, one other story of my own comes to mind.

I was in fifth grade when my family first moved to Arizona. We moved to a small town, and had very little. My dad worked nights at Circle K while working to get his plumbing business started, and my mom did her best to make us happy, all while cleaning rooms at the local Best Western.

Unfortunately, we didn’t have a ton of furniture in this big move from Colorado, and for a short time I didn’t have a bed. So, doing what my mom did best in tough times, she improvised. She used  old banana boxes, a lot of blankets and strangely, two old closet doors. With these things she made me a bed.

The boxes served as the box springs, the closet doors were then laid on top of those, and then she laid the blankets on top, and bought a twin-sized bed spread to fit. The closet doors stuck out at the bottom of the bed, serving as a shelf.

It may seem improper to some, but I was proud of this bed. It was comfortable, it was something I could call my own, and my mom took the time to make it for me. We called it my box bed.

That story is one of many that make my mom the best. I know at the time she felt bad about having her only daughter sleep on a box bed, but she probably had no idea that even now, years later, it is a moment I am proud of.

Today, I now have children of my own, and I call her daily for advice. I know if I can be half the mom she has been to me, I will be doing pretty well.

This editorial is dedicated to Pat Clark – the best mom in the world.

Send your essays to All ages are welcome to participate.

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