Mother's Day. That guilt ridden, worry filled, tormenting day when all of our worst traits are thrown into our faces by our sharp contrast to the ideal, impossible-to-aspire-to, perfect mother. Every card extols Her glorious dedication, every sermon lists Her unattainable qualities.
There should be a card that says, "Hey, you fed the kids two out of three meals, you maintained a clear path through the clutter in the main rooms of your house, and you're wearing a bra today!
You are the BEST MOTHER EVER!!!!"
There should be overpriced jewelry, with minuscule diamond-like chips in it, that says,
"You Tried", and "#2 Mom",
and "Could've Been Worse".
There should be a song that the little children get up in church to sing (for those of you who know it, throw the following words into that well worn Mother's Day song, Mother, I Love You):
Mother you're crazy
Mother it's true
My greatest fear is to grow up like you
Though I'm not near you
I can still hear you
Bellowing, ranting and scolding us too.
Mother, my shrink says
I shouldn't call you.
My mom always hated Mother's Day, so I kind of learned that Mother's Day seems to rub into mom's faces all the things they wish they were but feel they aren't. I have to be honest with you; I don't know many people whose qualities could be sold as a Hallmark card.
These are the people I do know:
I know a mom who was abused by her father, who had been abused by his father. She didn't continue the cycle.
I know a mom who has recognized the emotional drama that her mother generates, and has learned to distance herself and protect her children from it.
I know a mother who has taken damaged children that the world abandoned to the system, given them a name, a home, and a family of their own.
I know a mama who never got to have babes of her own, but hasn't let it stop her mother heart from nurturing the children of other mothers.
I know a mom who is going to college even as she prepares to send her own child to college.
I know a mother who is fighting the battle of her life, but her kids would never know it.
I know a mother who gave her child a better life, and gave another woman a chance to be called "mommy".
I know a mother who does it all by herself. All of it.
I know a dear mother who wraps her heart around every soul she meets, spreading warmth and love.
(Do you see yourself here? I hope you do)
Happy Mother's Day
to all the imperfect, trying very hard, mistake making but improving, sometimes impatient, moody or whiny, temper-losing, off-times unorganized, bra-less and utterly irreplaceable Mothers.
Unlike me, my day was pretty darn close to perfect.
I came home from church, put on roomy pants, grabbed my book, a pillow, and the baby, and headed for the hammock. I read and then I napped. No one mowed a lawn next-door, no neighbor played profanity-ridden rap music, no fly buzzed my face (I really hate that). The chickens were quiet. The kids didn't even fight or pester me. It. Was. Delicious.
When I woke, it was to the busy-bee voices of my family setting up dinner on the patio. Guy made awesome homemade Thai food, and not a single kid burped or said "pull my finger" the whole evening.
Later we had yummy Banana Fritters with strawberry puree' and pineapple-coconut ice cream. I was given a paper crown by Jonah, and a billion little cards and notes and hand prints from The Littles and Middles. It was so nice, I almost forgot that I am not as awesome as they were pretending I am. That's okay. It's nice to be paper-crown wearing queen for a day. I'll go back to being just-mom tomorrow.
A gift from Guy; little succulent pots he planted for me.
Everybody getting along.
Look at all those people I made! (Well, I had help)
Gifts for mama.
Back to the grind. A mother's work is never done!