Career Spotlight: Director of Nemours Children’s Hospital


By Blair Beggan, Director of Communications for The Association of Air Medical ServicesMaria Fernandez, the Director of Nemours Children’s Hospital, has aced both personal and professional challenges to rise to her current position, but she wouldn’t change a thing. Her heritage and her culture only aid in the work she does today, and I was lucky enough to sit down and speak with her.

1) Could you describe what your current position at Nemours Children’s Hospital entails?

Currently, I work as the Director of Critical Care Transport Services. My patients’ ages range from birth to 18 years of age. And although a lot of my current position requires management and oversight, I am still able to practice my clinical skills. I started as a nurse practitioner, and to this day I still go out and do field work when needed. For me, the ability to go out and transport a pediatric patient that requires critical care is the most rewarding part of my job. I like to be there for the families and friends of the patient, as well as the patient themselves. And my job doesn’t end when the patient leaves the hospital. I follow-up with the patients once they go home and keep track of their progress.

2) How are you involved with the Association for Air Medical Services (AAMS)?

I have been involved with AAMS since 1992! During my first nursing job, I worked very closely with the director of my medical transport team. In 1997, I became a member of AAMS and was involved with the organization from Day One. Being able to attend conferences and training seminars helped me to expand my network and grow as a medical transport care provider. I love the wealth of information that AAMS has given me, both for my professional development and for the growth of the organizations I work for.

3) Can you tell us any stories about patients or situations that were especially meaningful to you?

Several years back, I was on a medical transport for a premature baby who had not yet been home due to ongoing medical issues. The concern was that the baby was going to develop blindness because of how premature he was. The patient was very unstable, but needed to be transported to a specialist at another hospital and the decision on whether or not the baby could make the flight came down to me. But I was confident in my team and the people around me. I knew we could safely transport this baby and give him a chance at a great quality of life. The baby was in Puerto Rico and it was a two hour transport to the states. We stayed by the baby’s side the whole time, making sure he was comfortable and stable. He survived the flight, underwent eye surgery and he is now able to see. The family feels like my decision to transport their son is the reason he isn’t blind today, and I still keep in touch with them to this day. This type of story is the reason I do my job – I want to give these children a chance to have the best life possible.

 

Early this year I had another patient experience that really moved me emotionally. A teenage child was found unconscious about two hours away from my hospital. The medical crew on site was not sure what had caused the child to pass out. I arrived on the scene and immediately began to communicate with my team back in Orlando. We used FaceTime to communicate and share thoughts about the condition. We came to the conclusion that the patient may be having an allergic reaction to medicine. We changed the medicine and, amazingly, the child did a complete 180 and survived. It was wonderful to be able to use my knowledge in a situation like this and help save a life. I tell people all the time that I picked the best profession!

 

4) Can you tell us a little about your background and how your heritage has helped you become the woman you are today?

I was born in Cuba, but I left for Mexico at a very young age. Shortly thereafter, when I was two years old, we immigrated to the United States. My mom was a single parent in New York raising two children, and we grew up speaking mostly Spanish in our home. She was definitely an inspiration motivating us to pursue higher education and take advantage of life in the U.S. Being a single mother myself, I appreciate her even more today and understand how hard she worked to give me a wonderful life.

 

I moved to Miami in 1978 because I wanted to go to University of Miami to get nursing degree. I graduated from nursing school in 1983 and went on to get my masters in nursing at Florida International University (FIU). I then received my Masters in Business Administration and Health Services Administration in 2006. And this December, I will be completing my doctorate in nursing!

I think growing up in a Spanish-speaking household gave me a huge advantage in the nursing world, especially in Miami and Orlando. I am at an advantage for working with patients that a have a Hispanic background because I can speak to them in their native language and put them at ease. During times of crisis, people prefer to speak and communicate in their native tongue and it is wonderful to be able to offer than to them. I love being a mentor for other Hispanic women looking to pursue a career in nursing – I tell them it is something they won’t ever regret!

Advice: Dealing with Anxiety, Bullying, and Shyness

Young Latinitas gave some advice on issues that may affect all of us at one time to another. Hispanic girk looking sadWe have all dealt with anxiety, bullying or being shy on certain occasions. We get it; we’ve all been there, and these girls are here to give some advice on some of these issues. Here’s what you can do if you ever find yourself in these situations.

1.HOW DO YOU DEAL WITH ANXIETY?

When I am anxious I try to first calm myself, then I try to distract my mind with something that I like to do. It could be as simple as going to sleep and take a shower or going out with my friends or family.

2.WHAT TIPS DO YOU HAVE TO DEAL WITH BULLYING?

If you experience bullying, do not stay quiet! Words are a powerful tool, and if you stay quiet the bullying is going to continue. Try to talk to the bully first, and if that does not work then talk to a responsible adult like your parents or a teacher.

3.WHAT TIPS DO YOU HAVE TO DEAL WITH BEING SHY?

If you are shy, the first thing you need to do is feel comfortable in your own body and accept your strengths and weaknesses. When you achieve that, then take the risk of getting out of your comfort zone. Many times when we are shy we just stay in our own bubble and stick to the things we know, but if we do not take risks we can never know of the things we are missing out. The third step is to be confident about yourself. Know all the potential that you can bring. Lastly do not be afraid. I know it may not be easy, but overcoming shyness can bring you more benefits.

Chica Poderosa: Emily Hernandez

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In our Chicas Poderosa series, we highlight the stories of chicas and what makes them poderosas! Meet Emily Hernandez, Spring 2016 Editorial Intern. When asked why she’s a chica poderosa, Emily shares:

I am a chica poderosa because I’m proud of my Mexican roots, I’m independent, and I do everything I can to help the Latina community.

I’m a first generation Mexican American and I cannot be more proud. Growing up I had to translate everything for my parents, make doctor appointments for my entire family, and even help my siblings with their homework. Being a first generation and the oldest, I had many responsibilities a normal child didn’t have but those responsibilities and extra work made me the person I am today. I know two languages, I know how to cook and clean, I’m a college senior graduating this May, and I’m independent. Being the brain of the household gave me grit and the motivation to make a difference in Latinas lives.

My advice to Chicas everywhere is to be proud from where you came from, be proud of your body and mind, do not depend on anyone, and never stop dreaming.  You can achieve greatness and so much more if you put your mind to it and never let one failure kill your spirit. This same advice I give to my younger siblings. I know theres times in life when stereotypes makes it difficult to be happy with our looks and brains, but you’ll slowly realize that you are unique and you should never let anyone tell you otherwise. I see this all the time in young chicas and it makes me want to be a big sister for each and everyone of them.

Haunted: Legends of Our Past

One part of our culture is the leyendas or legends that are passed down throughout the time. As legends are passed through the grape vine each person, family, or even city has different versions of legends. Legends were once used to pass time or even scare children into behaving. Legends are an important part of our culture and are fun to talk about at anytime.

La Llorna:
“The crying woman” which is the literal translation of the phrase, is one of the most infamous leyenda. Though there are many versions of the story they all tell of a woman drowning her children either in sorrow, insanity, or selfishness. The tale most commonly goes that a young beautiful Mexican woman fell in love with a Spaniard, they had two children together. She waited and waited for him to make her his wife but that day never came. One day she decided she could hold her silence no more and traveled to his house to talk to him of their future. Upon her arrival she saw a fiesta (party) going on; it was her Spaniard’s wedding celebration to another woman. She was incredibly heartbroken and in a fit of insanity she drowned her children in the nearby river. She later realized what she had done and was cursed to wander the earth forever searching for her children. Some versions say that she drowned her children because she was waiting for her husband who never returned or that she wanted to rid herself of the burden the children caused. Each version warns children to not be out late at night because La Llorna searches each night for her lost children.

La Calle de la Quemada:
This legend despite its title (“the street of the burnt woman”) is not haunting like most legends, but instead tells the love story between Doña Beatriz and Martin Scipoli. Doña Beatriz was the most beautiful girls in her town; she easily charmed all men and had many suitors. Her father constantly pestered her to marry one of the men that loved her but she did not love any of them. One day she met a young Italian by the name of Don Martin Scipoli and they instantly fall in love. Soon the couple reaches turmoil as Don Martin is incredibly jealous and fights with everyman who looks at Beatriz. Doña Beatriz grows fearful that he only loves her for her beauty and decides to create a test. She places a wet handkerchief on her eyes and buries her face in coals becoming incredibly disfigured. Upon seeing her Don Martin does not act disgusted but instead ask her to marry him. They loved each other and neither one ever lived in fear again.

Pascualita:
There once was a clothing store in Chihuahua and the owner of the store (Pascuala Esparza) was said to have one of the most beautiful daughters in all of Mexico. Her daughter was soon to be married and on her wedding day tragedy struck, she was bitten by a black widow. Pascuala sunk into a depression and the store was closed for weeks. When the store re-opened everyone was in raptures over a new mannequin placed at the largest window in the store. The mannequin was incredibly beautiful and looked very life like. Soon people began to wonder about the mannequin because its eyes seemed to follow you and sometimes people swore it would come to life by smiling or winking at you. It was said that Pascuala found it difficult to part with her daughter that she preserved her body in the form of a mannequin.

By Ytzel McDaniel

Artistas Talentosas

These talented women have made significant contributions within the art world.

Alexis Herrera
Alexis Herrera is known for her diverse gothic paintings. Cuento de mis monsters is one of her outstanding galleries that emphasize anxiety, ordinary illusions of herself and her own version of mythological stories. She possesses an excellent technique at drawing and an outgoing imagination since she tells the most creative, and sometimes dark, stories around Texas with her paintings.

Carmen Herrera
Carmen Herrera has made great contributions to the abstract expressionism movement in Cuba with her paintings. She is iconic and well-known for using bright colors and expressing them through geometric figures.

Carmen Lomas Garza focuses on the daily lives of Mexican Americans. Her paintings emphasize ordinary events that she went through while living in California and Texas during her childhood. She uses a technique called gouache (which is a water color paint in a dry and opaque surface). This contemporary Latina established the Carmen Lomas Garza Primary Center in 2007 in Los Angeles. The center creates a free discrimination space for Mexican American kids who want to learn about painting.

Latina Activists: Huerta, Sor Juana and Anzaldúa

Learn more about these Latina activists:

Dolores Huerta

Huerta is a labor leader and civil rights activist who was an early member of the National Farmworkers Association, which later became the United Farm Workers (UFW). Huerta was the daughter of Juan Fernandez, a miner, farmer worker, union activist, and state assemblyman, and Alicia Chavez. Chavez raised Huerta and her two brothers in the central California farm worker community of Stockton, California. Huerta’s mother was known for her kindness and compassion towards others and was active in community affairs, numerous civic organizations, and the church.

Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz

She was a self-taught scholar and poet of the Baroque school, and was known in her lifetime as “The Tenth Muse.” Juana was a devoutly religious child who often hid in the hacienda chapel to read her grandfather’s books from the adjoining library, something forbidden to girls. She learned how to read and write Latin at the age of three.Sor Juana is considered today as a Mexican writer and a contributor to the Spanish Golden Age. Her famous poema is “hombres necios que acusan a la mujer sin razon.”

Gloria Anzaldúa

She was a scholar of Chicana cultural theory and feminist theory. Anzaldúa was born in the Rio Grande Valley of south Texas. Gloria Anzaldúa’s great-grandfather, Mr. Urbano, was the first owner of the Jesús María Ranch in which she was born. Her mother grew up in an adjoining ranch, Los Vergeles, which was owned by her family. She met and married Urbano Anzaldúa when both were very young. Anzaldúa was a descendant of many of the prominent Spanish explorers and settlers to come to the Americas in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, as well as of indigenous descent.

Soy Bilingüe

 These Latina women tell their story and the experiences they’ve had growing up in a world where they have to balance two different cultures and two different languages. Some have more experience speaking English and Spanish, but being Mexican-Americans and coming from Latino families, they all agree that living between both worlds and both languages just became part of their normal lives.

Bianca Castrejon grew up in El Paso Texas. Her grandparents and father grew up in Mexico; being second generation in the United States, English is her first language. She shares that in school, speaking English was a requirement while speaking Spanish was punished, yet because her family spoke to her in Spanish she is familiar with both.

Because my family speaks a lot of Spanish, there’s some words that I know in Spanish better than I know in English. Sometimes I’ll be mixing the two even though Spanish is not my first language,” Bianca shares.

Bianca is not the only one to mix these two languages; many agree that living in an area with such a strong Latino culture, it becomes a normal thing. Evelyn, who lives in a bilingual home, feels more comfortable speaking English. She comments on her views of those who speak this new language, Spanglish.

“Most people that do speak Spanglish are learning English, they went to school in Mexico and then came over here. They can’t just pick up English so they mix it. I don’t see a problem with it, Spanish is their language and they are trying to catch English,” she adds.

Sharlenne Zubia, who feels that she is fluent in both languages, grew up in the border region of the United States and mixes both frequently.

“I’ll say something like quiero esos red shoes, I’ll mix English and Spanish,” she says.

When asked if she thought this was okay she responded that “as long as you can communicate, I think it’s fine.” She explains everyone in her community find this normal.

With 41 million native speakers in the United States plus an additional 11.6 bilingual speakers, all women feel that knowing both languages and being bilingual has now become a great advantage.

Vanessa Ramirez, who speaks Spanish at home and English at school shares that “when you apply for a job, they prefer the ones who are bilingual.”

These women are not only used to hearing and using both languages, but looking back at history and how the world has become highly globalized, it should then come as no surprise that surely knowing both languages is a positive thing. Yet, some of the girls share some of their negative experiences when accidentally mixing both when speaking.

Ariadne Venegas was born in El Paso Texas yet continues to live in the border town of Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua. She spends a lot of time in the United States and actually started learning English when she was in kindergarten. Even though Spanish is her first language, spending so much time in the United States has resulted in some English words occasionally slipping out.

Porque ya paso la mayoria del tiempo aquí. But it’s not because I want to. Like, I can’t remember the word in Spanish,” she shares.

She says that at times, doing this, brings negative remarks from Spanish speakers.

[My dad] he would tell me don’t use both languages because you will be called chicana…that’s why I refer it as a bad thing because my dad put me into that culture, mixing both languages I would be called chicana, but I mean I kind of don’t like the word because nobody should be called that way, I mean, it’s a culture, it’s just a culture,” she adds.

When it comes to culture, sometimes mixing both languages creates challenges.

I’m always being called white cause I’m mixing both languages,” Sharlenne says.

Bianca believes that because of this reason “being multicultural is a challenge.”

Not everyone is going to understand, because you’re coming from a different culture and you’re managing two cultures and not everyone is going to be understanding and tolerant of the language…it comes with its ups and downs….that’s probably where the issue kind of lies because people think black or white, either or, so pick one,” adds Bianca.

It’s like a double work for us because we have to learn Spanish and then we have to learn English,” says Ariadne.

Still, after experiencing some of these negative reactions, all agreed that they were proud of being Latinos in the United States and having the opportunity of sharing both cultures and both languages. Additionally, they comment on how they are proud and would even teach their children and the future generations to be bilingual.

The Latino culture is now expanding so more people are speaking the Spanish language,” adds Ariadne.

That’s just the result of somebody balancing two cultures, living here in America but having your roots and family in Mexico. And that’s just the result, speaking Spanglish,” comments Bianca.

Being bilingual is something valued greatly in this globalized world, and having multiple cultures should be something to be proud of. While before, Latinos in the United States were forced to forget their roots and language, now they can hold on to their origins and still belong to the American culture and society.

Price of Beauty

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Written by Jackie Aguilar

In 2013, the European Union decided to ban all products or product ingredients that have been tested on animals. In the United States we have laws for animal cruelty yet none on them seem to ban animal testing. According to the Humane Society, 92% of experimental drugs that are deemed “safe” in animal trails fail in human clinical trials.

Animal testing first took off in 1920, since then it has continued to grow and exist. Since 1920 technology and humanity have made it over so many mountains but we have yet to fully go over this one. The question is: why haven’t we?

“I never really think about it. Animal cruelty has been shunned when it comes to beauty products. When you think of beauty products, you don’t think about what it took to make them but how they are going to make you look, which is kind of materialistic and selfish but that’s how society is,” says Monica Burciaga, 17.

For girls like Angelia Carrete, 17, being conscious of brands you buy can be hard, and when you’re trying to find a specific brand it might even be the last thing on your mind that day.

“I have honestly never thought about it. It is something I do care about, but for some reason it has slipped my mind, ”says Angelica Carrete,17.

“When you think of beauty you really don’t think about what it took to make them, but only about how they are going to make you look,” adds Burciaga.

 

In order to create awareness about the issue and create a lasting solution, we must shed the ignorance we have put ourselves under and realize that this is a problem.

As a society we think that if it is out of sight, it’s out of mind. However, the truth is that even though there are companies whose products are not tested on animals, there are many companies who still practice animal testing.

“I don’t think we should still be testing on animals because first off, the chemicals in makeups shouldn’t be so harsh that we nee to test them in the first place. Secondly, as advanced as we are with technology there should be some way to test it on something other than animals,”says Rosemary Vozza,17.

In fact, some companies try to comply with animal cruelty laws of other countries in order to “pass” as cruelty free. Even though this is publicly accessible information, the role animals play in the production of make-up still remains a problem in the United States. DoSomething.org claim that up to 90% of animals used in U.S. labs are not counted in the official statistics of animals tested.

Burciaga,Carrete, and Vozza have agreed to be more proactive of animal-tested products. Being more proactive and making the decision to making a change is the first step. What you buy matters! It’s kind of like a vote for the company. If more people stop purchasing the brands that are not cruelty free, the company will be forced to revaluate why and do something to change that. If we want to make a change for these animals, we must be proactive with awareness and our power as consumers. The next time you’re shopping for a new palette, check the packet for a cruelty free logo. Remember, raise awareness and support cruelty free companies.

Want to know if your favorite make-up brand is cruelty free? Check out this official list of what companies test on animals:

http://www.leapingbunny.org/guide/brands

 

9 Tips to Being BFFs with Your Mom

Photo Credit: http://thinkinkpr.com/

Photo Credit: http://thinkinkpr.com/

Is your mom your best friend or your  enemy? Do you argue constantly and can’t seem to get along? Your mom can be the coolest person you know and can sometimes become the person you don’t ever want to talk to again. Believe it or not there are ways to improve the relationship with your mom and make it much better!

Sometimes it might seem that your mom doesn’t understand your problems or what you’re feeling. How could your mom know what you’re going through if there isn’t any communication? The truth is that she most likely DOES know what you’re going through.

Instead of seeing your mom as a MOM, try viewing her as what she was before she became your mom. At a point in her life she was just like you, she was your age once, she went through fights with her friends and even had her heart broken too! If you really think about it, she’s your best candidate when it comes to advice!

Of course, your mom isn’t always going to know what is going on in your life although most of the time she has a pretty good idea. How will she understand your problems? It’s simple. Talk.

Talk – Communication is the key in any relationship. Easier said than done – right? Even when you feel shy or embarrassed about a problem you may have your mom is there to help you out! Talk to her like a friend after all she isn’t just your mom but she is also your friend. The hardest thing to do is to start so as soon as you start talking it becomes easier! But how do you approach your mom? Here are a few helpful tips.

Tip 1: Know Your Goal in the Conversation

The experts at WebMD recommend that you think about the goal of the conversation first. Whether it’s advice, asking permission to go somewhere or even bad news, know what you want from the conversation. Practice how and what you will say to make it easier for both you and your mom.

Tip 2: Make Small Talk

Try to have small talk about anything. In fact, it can be a sport you play, her cooking, or the cat. By having small talk everyday it allows you to have a connection and it makes it much easier to have a conversation. “Definitely communicate with your mom on a daily basis and maybe do something for them because I think sometimes we don’t realize how much they do for us,” says Kimberly Apodaca, 17.

“Try to open up, ask her about her day just have little conversations with your mom,” adds Sabrina Portillo, 18.

Tip 3: Right Time and Place

Find the right time and place at home, like in your favorite room, can help ease the situation. If you have to try to talk to your mom and it’s bad news, it’s not the best to say it while she’s in a rush to work. Don’t bring it up at a party or at a time when your mom is distracted (like talking on the phone).

Tip 4: Listen to your Parents Speak

What your parents have to say may not be what you wanted to hear. But you wouldn’t want your mom to storm out the room when you have something say, right? Give each other time while talking in order to process. Being patient and understanding can make a huge difference!

Tip 5: Talk to Another Adult

It may be hard to have a conversation with your mom, but there are other adults that can help with the situation. Perhaps talking with an aunt or a counselor can even help you talk to your mom. If you feel that your mom won’t understand you even after trying to talk to her, simply remind her that you are trying and that you want to work thinks out.

Tip 6: Give Each Other Space

Sometimes it’s not the talking that’s the issue, it’s the arguing. In the heat of the moment sometimes we say things we don’t mean, which means having  shouting match with your mom can lead to someone getting their feelings hurt. Give each other space to calm down and avoid saying hurtful things to each other. When asked what to do when she argues with her mom, Sabrina agrees that giving each other space eases the situation.

Tip 7: Apologize

Arguing and raising your voice isn’t always the best feeling in the world. If you try to get your point across in a calm way and give each other space, it gives both your mom and you time to think. Once you really think about what you said or what the real problem is, it becomes much easier to talk and try to fix the issue. Remember to STOP. THINK. AND APOLOGIZE. A sincere apology at the end of an argument always eases things and makes room for understanding.

Does this “closeness” happen overnight? No, of course not! It’s a process just like with anyone else.

Tip 8: Put Yourself in Her Shoes

At a time when the problems may only be yours, try to think about your mom and put yourself in her shoes. Kimberly gives a piece of advice: “Try to understand your mom’s point of view and if you don’t agree on certain things reason with them, that doesn’t mean throwing a tantrum when you don’t get your way.”

Tip 9: Show Appreciation

Above all showing your mom you care is important. Sometimes they need a simple ‘thank you’ to show you care. “Appreciate your mother; It’s always the small things that you do with your mom that count, like small jokes you have between each other or just showing your mamá some love,” says Kimberly.

Sabrina also adds that as she has gotten older, her mom has become more of a friend. “I can tell her most things that happen to me and I gossip with her,” she says.

Trying to be close with your mom can be a challenge, but ultimately that’s what she probably also wants. If you ever seem to struggle to understand her something you can always do is put yourself in HER shoes. Think what you would say or do if you had a daughter. It’s not always easy being a mom; seeing her daughter grow up and become a young independent lady can be challenge, too. Make your mom your best friend and not your worst enemy.

Quiz: Is your mom your BFF?

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Instructions: Read the question or statement and answer either “yes” or “no.” When you are finished with the quiz count how many “yes” answers you got and read the results below. Have fun, chica!

1 Do you and your mom have a favorite movie that you like to watch together? Y/N

2 Calling your mom at any time, day or night, is one of the most comforting things in the world. Y/N

3 Will you go to a concert of your favorite band with your mom? Y/N

4 Are you able to tell your mom everything without fear of judgment? Y/N

5 Can you tell your mom a secret and you are sure that she won’t tell no one? Y/N

6 Sometimes you don’t need words because you can communicate with her using facial expressions. Y/N

7 If you are looking for a great advice about everything, do you consult your mom? Y/N

8 You never seem to be able to hold a grudge against her for too long. Y/N

9 She’s your rock and you know you’ll be lost without her. Y/N

10 She’s the person you turn to that can instantly make you feel better when you’ve had a bad day. Y/N

11 You bond over favorite TV shows or movies and sometimes call each other just to complain about something one of the characters did last week. Y/N

12 One of your favorite things to do together is have long conversations over coffee or tea about life, the past, the present, experiences you’ve shared, and everything in between. Y/N

13 Is she the first person you immediately call or text after something major happens, like a first date or when you make a new friend? Y/N

14 You can always talk to her about your school crush because your mom has amazing advice based on years of experience. Y/N

15 When you’re feeling down your mom knows how to lift your spirits up by doing whatever she can to make you feel better? Y/N

16 On a big life decision you go to her for a piece of advice Y/N

17 Do you have strong communication with your mom? Y/N

18 Do you think your mom is hilarious? You both share the same sense of humor and you love sharing funny stories or things you find online to get her reaction. Y/N

19 Are you always thinking of nice things you could do for her or little things that would make her life easier? Y/N

20 Your relationship gets stronger and stronger every year. The love and respect you have for her is ridiculously high and you can’t imagine a life without her in it. Y/N

No. OF YES TYPE OF RELATIONSHIP
1 – 3 “The Stranger”

It seems like you and your mom need to work on getting to know each other. Maybe it is not all on you or on her, it might be external factors that are affecting the relationship. Get informed and find ways to interact more often, simple things like putting away the dishes or walking the dog can be the start to a wonderful mother-daughter relationship.

4-7 “I think I’ve seen you around “

Routine can be a killer for a relationship, maybe that’s what’s happening with you guys. Don’t let routine become a wall between you and your potential best friend. Organize your schedule and plan activities together. A girls night, a movie, or a walk to the park can be a good way to shake the stress away and get to spend more quality time together.

7-10 “ The Settlers”

It seems like both of you know “enough” about each other. Don’t settle for the basics and instead upgrade the relationship to trying new things together — maybe a new hobby just for the two of you, volunteering at the same place, a physical activity or learning one the famous family dinner recipes.

11-15 “Are we there yet?”

Not quite there yet but you guys have earned an “A” for effort.  Think about the “stuff” you don’t feel comfortable sharing with your mom or doing with her. Communication is the best tool to build bridges and bring down walls; use it wisely and discover all the good stuff that is waiting for both of you on the other side of the wall.

16-19 “The Amigitas”

You guys know you can’t go do anything without sharing it with one another. Whether it’s talking about your school crush or hanging out with her, you and your mom have a great relationship!

20 Best Friends for Life”

No doubt! You girls are meant to be besties. Life has gifted you with an amazing woman who’s your mother and friend at the same time. What a great combination, don’t you think? Your friends must love the relationship that you have with your mom.