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5th March 2013

Mum’s the word

What we students have our mums to thank for this Mother’s Day

Mums, where would we be without them? Lifestyle editors Dana and Beth share their views.


It’s only been since I’ve flown the nest and moved myself 100 miles away from my mum for nine months of the year, that I’ve realised the value of her presence in my life. Until I came to university, I had never been subjected to any domestic chores whatsoever. I had never used a vacuum cleaner or a washing machine in my whole, entire life. The most complex meal I had ever cooked was cheese on toast, and the furthest I’d ever taken a ‘financial plan’ was to budget myself £20 for a night out.

Suddenly, I was thrown into what all condescending adults like to call ‘the real world’- a daily grind of feeding myself without burning any of the food or causing a fire, running frantically around Sainsbury’s trying to find every Basics product in stock, and ensuring that I set around fourteen alarms every morning so I get out of bed and make it to lectures on time. Without having my mum on the other end of the phone, I think I may well have managed to throw myself under the 142 before Christmas.

I recently endeavoured to cook a Sunday roast for myself and two flat mates. It has to be said that I emerged from the ordeal highly stressed, sweaty and with a new found hatred of Yorkshire Puddings (who knew that they took so long to rise?) I called my mum to vent my frustrations and realised that this is what she does every Sunday.

I have come to a similar conclusion about many of the ‘real world’ events I have experienced over the last few months. It has made me realise that I take the little things that my mum does for granted. They have left a big ‘Mum-shaped’ hole in my life since I’ve moved away.

This Mother’s Day, I will be showing true appreciation to my mum for everything she does, big and small. I encourage you, fellow students, to do the same because it’s the one day of the year that can really show a bit of love and gratitude to the women that gave us life. And then we can go straight back to being argumentative, stroppy young adults for the remaining 364 days, of course.



I am 20 years old. My mum is 40 years old. By the time she was my age she had left education, got a full time job, met my dad, moved in with him and given birth to her first baby (me). Fast forward two decades later and here I am, single, childless, studying at university and still wondering how on earth the dress I have been ironing for about an hour has managed to become more creased than when I started.

When I first came to university in September 2011, I was under the illusion that it would all be one big party. I never imagined quite how much I would miss my family and my faraway hometown of Plymouth. Despite meeting my lovely now-housemates, it took a whole lot of crying down the phone before I truly began to enjoy myself. Even then, I was often counting down the days until I would be met with a great big mummy cuddle at the train station.

The truth is that I was (and still am) a baby – just quite a big one. If it was still socially acceptable for me to hold my mum’s hand in public, I probably would. I always have and always will be a mummy’s girl. So, like Beth, I have realised just how much we students have our mums to thank for this Mother’s Day.

My mum has been behind every single one of my achievements – from learning how to walk, read and write, to passing my A-Levels and getting into university. She played Barbies with me when I was four. She told me that it was all going to be okay when I was dumped for the first time aged 16. She put me to bed when I was 17 and too drunk to stand. She waved me off in Manchester when I was 18 and she will be here again to see me graduate next year.

We may joke about the cleaning, the cooking and the ironing, but it is the words of encouragement, the instilling of confidence and the unconditional love and support of our mums that have led us to where we are today. And they will lead us to where we are tomorrow, too.

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