Posts Tagged ‘joys of motherhood’

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Well, another Mother’s Day has come and gone. In case you lost count, it’s now Tuesday which marks 2 full days since Mother’s Day and it also happens to mark 2 full days since I’ve been waiting to have a waking moment of peace to myself in order to write a blog about Mother’s Day. Because that’s what happens when you’re a mother. You wait. You wait for silence. You wait for peaceful quiet bliss. You wait for the moment when the hellions stop trying to kill each other and drift into dreamland and hope to God you can stay awake long enough to squeeze a minute or two of enjoyment out of it before you pass out from exhaustion on the couch. Ahhhh…. the joys of motherhood.

Now, don’t get me wrong. Love my kids!!!! Don’t go jumping on the judgy bandwagon and thinking that a little complaining here and there means I don’t appreciate the beautiful gift of children. Because I totally, completely do. But if I’m being perfectly honest, I like to feel sorry for myself every once in a while. It’s totally cathartic. I recommend it. Wallow in self pity for a bit! You’ll feel great! You’ll feel validated! You’ll feel like your 4 year old gets to feel when he has an uninterrupted and ignored temper tantrum when you say “No” to a treat at the grocery store. Un-acknowledged, maybe, but totally satisfied and ready to take on the rest of the day. Why should our kids be the only ones who get to be selfish brats sometimes? I wanna be a brat, too!

And so, for Mother’s Day this year, I decided to be a little bit selfish. It started on Saturday when I went shopping for my own mother’s gift. This got me thinking. Mothers always say they don’t want anything for Mother’s Day, my mom included. This is not true. Not even a little bit. There had better be a gift, or some flowers, or some toast and coffee in bed, or at least a damn card waiting because let’s be honest: it is literally the LEAST you could do. Really. What mother doesn’t appreciate a little bit of thought put into her happiness, at least one day of the year? And if you give your mother or your wife or your baby momma the excuse that you “Didn’t have time to get anywhere, and you’ll make it up to her,” you’re a special kind of douchebag. Mother’s Day is marked on the calendar. It’s not a big surprise. You have warning that it’s coming, same time every year. Get something.

So I’m shopping for my mom and we happen to have similar tastes in a lot of things, so a lot of the gifts I am considering for her are REALLLY appealing to me…for myself. Does this ever happen to you? And suddenly a genius thought strikes me. I’m going to buy myself my own damn Mother’s Day present. After years of boring gifts, thoughtless gifts, no gifts, gifts chosen by sister-in-laws, last minute gifts, gifts from the checkout aisle at the grocery store, I decide that I’ve paid my dues and I am determined to have a mother’s day gift that I really enjoy. And who better to choose it than me? Who appreciates my mothering skills and virtues more than I do? Who has a better understanding of the day in day out sacrifices a mother makes, including her own personal sanity? Nobody. I wander around the store, looking at all the things I would love to have, wondering to myself just exactly how I might measure up on the Good Mom scale. I take a mental inventory of all the crappy-mom things I have done, and compare them to a list of all the pretty great-mom things in my repertoire. I finish my shopping and head to the checkout. This year, I’m not going to wait and wonder if I will be disappointed by my family’s ‘efforts’. I am not going to base my value as a mother on the thought that anyone else may or may not have put into a gift or sentiment for me. This year, on Mother’s Day, my gift to myself is a good book, a cute little purse, and my own realization that I am a really good mother.

On Sunday morning, the Big Day, I awake to a quiet house. The older ones are at their dad’s and the little one is awake and downstairs with my BF. Nobody is bothering me. For a moment I consider that I should probably get up and go downstairs, but I decide against it and lay in bed and browse Facebook instead. Lots of ‘Happy Mother’s Day’ messages. A strange phenomena is brought to my attention….all of the messages are from Mothers. A sneaking suspicion that has been gnawing at me lately is validated: The only people who truly care about Mother’s Day are mothers themselves.

Let me make myself clear. I know that all of you sons and husbands and fathers and even some daughters out there may really truly appreciate the women in your lives who happen to be mothers. You may even lavish these moms with special gifts, suppers, flowers, etc on Mother’s Day, putting a lot of thought into what might make this special woman happy. Of this is the case, good for you! You’re not a douchebag, carry on. All I’m saying is that nobody can really truly appreciate a mother like another mother can. You never truly realize what kind of sacrifices and bullshit your mother had to put up with because of you, until you become a mother yourself. And you can’t even fathom a mother’s love until you are the one giving it, unconditional and unrelenting, day in and day out for the rest of your days on earth. And this is why Mother’s Day is so important. As a mother, the best gift you can give yourself on Mother’s Day and any other day is the permission to fail, the strength to continue, and the acknowledgment that you’re doing a good job, and nobody knows that more than another mother does.

When my 8 year old daughter got home, she proudly presented me with a pile of artwork she had been working on all weekend. She had made me a Mothers Day card, of course. A big picture of my face, with a poem,
“You are specile, You are Bright, you are the best mom in the light.”
She began describing the picture in detail. “See, mom, I gave you black hair, and the little earrings you always wear. And your pink lips and the blush on your cheeks, because I know you like to put blush on your cheeks.” And then she stops, looks at the picture, looks at me, and says, “Awwww Man!” I say, “What?” She says, “I totally forgot to put those big black circles under your eyes!”.

Happy Mother’s Day to me.