Yesterday was a big day in our neck of the woods. Yes, Mother’s Day has risen quite a big in the cultural consciousness over its 100 year life span. It has grown from a small peace movement to a Hallmark Holiday filled with cards, flowers, luncheons, and even moments of honor during church services. And honestly the day has gotten too large to suit me. It is a runner up with Valentines Day in events that create more pressure than one day can stand.
To be honest Mother’s Day and I have a bad history. During my five years of infertility, Mother’s Day would rear up annually and taunt me with all that I wished I had but lacked. It was a day for me that held more shame and pain than gratitude and joy.
But things are different now. Now I have two children that fill this holiday with handmade cards and hugs. Problem solved right?
I am not sure of all the reasons that cause Mother’s Day to haunt me so. It could be the stress of coming off as the perfect mom and knowing how far I am from that illusion. It could just be the busyness that results from adding together church, multiple family gatherings, and whatever my own family is going to do for the day. Whatever the cause, I know what the outcome was yesterday.
I was a tired, distracted, and cranky mom on Mother’s Day.
Don’t get me wrong. The breakfast was lovely. The kids tried to be nice and on good behavior (tried ). The even got me a stellar gift that I loved. But still, there was some bad mojo with me and the big M Day.
My bad mood haunted me as much as the day did. I kept trying to shake it but couldn’t. I awoke this morning, the day after and felt even worse. Not only was I grumpy, but felt sorry that I had wasted an opportunity to share this day with my kids. After all, my bad mood was not their fault. They were sweet and loving and made me cards like this:
After mourning my mood for a while, eventually I knew what I had to do.
I needed a Mother’s Day Do-Over.
Not a whole day mind you. And no more flowers or cards were required. I just needed some time where I could actually be with my kids and show how grateful I am for them and their love.
So I hatched a plan. As soon as I picked the children up from school I would apologize for being such a cranky butt on our special day together and ask for a second chance at some bonding time. We would then blow off any plans or commitments we had for the evening (sorry swim practice) and settle in for some relaxed time together.
Of course the kids were all in (Blow off our homework? Sounds great!) We ended up snuggling in on the sofa for a mini marathon of the Brady Bunch DVDs they had gotten me as my gift. Then we added in the Chinese take-out brought home by their Dad. It was small and silly and in many ways so serene. Just some Sesame Chicken and giggles over those crazy Brady antics. In fact I got so relaxed I drifted in and out of sleep while Jan was trying to figure out if she was allergic to her new Dad or her new dog (spoiler alert: it was the dog’s flea powder all along).
I guess that’s what happens when I finally make peace with Mother’s Day.
As you end this day or begin another, may you find the grace of a much needed Do-Over.