I have been thinking about Mother’s Day for weeks. This is not normal for me, but for some reason I have felt the urge to make this year something special. But what to do? Finally, today, inspiration came.
We always make Melissa breakfast in bed on Mother’s Day. Why? Because Megan and Caitlyn love to do it, and Melissa humors them. But we won’t this year–church is at 9am, and we’re going to have an old friend camping out on the couch anyway.
She says what she really wants is a trip to a spa. I think we can swing it.
Russell, I have done that, too. And for the same reason.
I am routinely disappointed by Mother’s Day, probably because I don’t have a good sense for what the ideal Mother’s Day should be. My wife does not demand a lot from the day, but I have always wanted to overdeliver, and it (almost) never happens.
I think Mother’s Day is a day for mothers to really step up and show us what they can do–remind us why we appreciate them so much. Really knock us out with a terrific dinner, leaving the kitchen spic-and-span afterwards, etc.
I usually succeed in overdoing things- make breakfast in bed with the kids, don’t let Andrea near the kitchen, let her sleep in, and shower her with presents. Of course, I try to help her feel special all year, but especially on Mother’s Day. Which is odd, considering my attitude towards holidays. Well- she likes it so I do it because I love her.
But I beg her not to do the same for me on Father’s Day, because I really can’t stand people going out of their way for me. But it’s fun to do it for her.
My teenage son was asked to speak on Mother’s Day. His talk began something like this.
*Sixteen years ago a beautiful, loving mother gave birth to a handsome baby boy. On that same day I was also born.*
My wife gets sick of the *Perfect Mother* talks that are given every Mother’s Day. So, my son told the mothers that it’s love that makes an ordinary mother a perfect mother.
“my son told the mothers that it’s love that makes an ordinary mother a perfect mother.”
I love this. We love our children despite the dirty diapers, tantrums, and whining about homework. Most of us would never pretend our kids are perfect, but it’s understood that we still love them unconditionally. I wish no one would ever imply that mothers (or fathers, or anyone else) somehow earn their childrens’ love by never making a mistake.
I always try to encourage my family to keep the fuss at a minimum. I ask for services rather than gifts, for one thing, my kids are poor. So I ask them to help me with something or rub my feet or something.
This Sunday, my daughters and husband are going to take flowers to my mother and visit her as my gift for Mother’s Day. I am going to just rest. That’s all I want.
I really would rather skip the fuss, but this is the best compromise for us.
Last year, Kingsley posted in a comment Eliot’s “A Dedication to my Wife.” My husband made a card of it. I think it was my only “gift,” because money was tight and I didn’t really need stuff. But it was unquestionably the best Mother’s Day gift I ever received, in over 24 years of mothering.