Behind Good Men Are Great Moms
Written by Josh Bailey
I tend to associate myself with my father. His hard work ethic and his love of God and family solidify him as the main role model in my life. Envisioning myself in thirty years, I see my dad. However, when I consider the many tasks and habits I perform from day to day, I realize the profound impact of my mother’s consistent love and instruction. As I brush my teeth, pray before a meal, or edit my research paper, I can see my mother’s words lived out.
As I asked other guys to share the impact their mothers have had on them, I was moved by the importance mothers hold across Hillsdale’s campus. Even if they shared something small that their mother had taught them, it struck me that the reason these young men can even function as adults is primarily reliant on their mothers.
For some guys, it is life lessons. Sophomore Andrew Sheard said, “My mother taught me how to do things for myself rather than have others do it for me.” As an example, he pointed out how his mother taught him to do his own laundry—a common theme I discovered among nearly all men on campus. Despite this knowledge, he confessed, “There’s still something daunting about the selection on a washer machine.”
Freshman Reagan Dugan also shared a life lesson he carries from his mother. “My mom taught me to do things I enjoy doing and to pursue what I love.” In Reagan’s case this is his love for European soccer and his passion to teach high-school classics.
For other students, Mom is the reason they attend Hillsdale College. John Gage, a junior American studies major, pointed out, “My mom quite literally educated me for thirteen years of life. I got my love of reading from my mom,” and he satirically added, “which means I’m not quite as far behind in my reading as I would otherwise be.”
In the case of Alexander Green, a sophomore RA in Niedfeldt Dormitory, his mother prepared him for his leadership role. He said, “How well my mom cares for my family at home helped set me up for how to care for guys in my dorm.” He mentioned knowing how to do laundry (I warned you, didn’t I?). “Some guys can’t,” he said, “and I’m like, how do you live without doing laundry?”
As a native Texan, sophomore Christian Yiu is able to survive the frigid Michigan climate in large part because of his mother. He said, “She bought me all my winter clothes before coming up here.” Beyond taking care of his needs, Christian also shared how his mother taught him etiquette and the art of cooking.
Finally, for some a mother’s gift is cheerfulness. Senior Daniel Drummond, captain of the football team, said, “I learned that pure happiness is receiving a letter in the mail from my mom.” He explained, “My mom always sends me these little cards with funny pictures on them. It’s the best. It’s awesome.” Although it is a simple thing, I could tell how much this ritual means to the three-hundred-pound lineman.
I at least speak for myself when I say that guys do not like to show their emotions very often. However, there will always be a thoughtful and loving piece of ourselves that was placed there by our mothers. Their little lessons will stick with us the rest of our lives. So, thanks, Mom, for that piece of me that would not be there without your consistent and loving care.
Josh Bailey, ’19, is a marketing major from the back roads of Iowa. A volunteer program leader, intramural athlete, and dedicated student, he can usually be found either busy with a project, sweating in the gym or buried in a book in the corner of the library. In his free time he enjoys adventurous shenanigans with the guys in his dorm.