It really is all about the apostrophe, isn't it? Is it a day for just the one mother, or all mothers? They say it is a "made up" holiday, similar to Valentine's Day, just a reason for the Hallmark company to make money. But, as a mother, I'm all for acknowledging all that we do. My daughter and I had a laugh last night at the supper table, unfortunately at my husband's expense, how he was unable to listen to the song that was playing and at the same time listen to the question I was asking. Multitasking is just such as way of existing for women that we take it for granted that everyone has that skill. It's not even a skill, really. I think every mom out there is able to accomplish a task while thinking about the six other things she either needs to purchase, complete, remind to, or ask about later that day.
My family has done themselves proud this morning. The fact that the two teenagers got out of bed to watch me open presents and read their cards is in itself a miracle. (They have both since gone back to bed!). Because Mother's Day falls in May, I often receive gardening type gifts, which are always used and appreciated. This year I received not one, but two pruners. I am always on the hunt for the ultimate set of garden clippers because I destroy about one a season. I am so tired of crappy tools and other consumer goods. So I now have two Fiskars on my kitchen table. I have high hopes.
Also, another favourite present has been porch sets (chairs, settees, tables, benches, etc). This year I received a bistro set of folding wooden chairs and a table. This is a good thing because our bistro set from maybe three years ago has started to shred and unravel, although the table is still in good shape and will likely go live somewhere else on the property.
My daughter picked out a rabbit statue for me, very heavy, concrete and absolutely adorable. I am a big fan of rabbits. I love old illustrations of rabbits from story books or greeting cards, especially if the rabbits are upright and wearing clothes. I have had rabbit statues in the garden and ceramic rabbits as decorative pieces in the house. I love spotting cottontails on the property. I am not even all that upset when I discover they have chewed off various plants. Unfortunately I have been gifted deceased baby bunnies by our cat, Samson. He is so proud.
Also from my daughter was a Monty Python mug with a variety of quotes all over it from different movies and skits. I LOVE Monty Python and can be obnoxious in my quoting (complete with appropriate voice and accent). I get a great kick out a discovering a fellow Monty Python fan when a situation lends itself to a particular quote and we both end up saying it and then laughing and pointing at each other knowing exactly why we said it. (Can anyone relate?)
My son's card included the line about me "borning" him which came from when he was very young and that is how he referred to me giving birth to him. (He is now 15 and much taller than I). I find it amazing that I am the mom of a young man and a young woman. I can still conjure up the feeling of holding them after a feeding, all heavy, warm and slightly sloshy. It's only been a few years now that I've stopped swaying while waiting in a grocery line. (You know, that bouncy sway that all of us moms did for years while holding our children).
This year, my husband had difficulty booking a place for supper for two reasons. First, our favourite place is now retiring as of this weekend, so it was fully booked quite a long time ago. Secondly, he (and I) have been exhaustingly busy making arrangements to get his own mother (who is now suffering from dementia, but is physically well) into a senior's apartment quite close to us. So, I actually have no problem being the supper maker tonight for the four of us. I picked up short ribs at the grocery store yesterday and I do them in a Dutch oven. They come out fall-apart tender and delicious!! Other wonderful things will be done for me, so making supper is easy. There is a surprise dessert in the "spare fridge" which I am not allowed to look at.
I sometimes listen to my younger female colleagues talk about the goings-on with their young children. They talk about how they worry about their illnesses, or their occasional behavior issues and I think that motherhood begins with worrying about your babe while it is still ensconced in your own body and the worrying never stops. I still fret over them now that they are 15 and 19. When they are feeling unwell, you want to make it go away. When they are upset over friendship issues, or they do poorly on an assignment, or they drive away by themselves, you just want everything to be o.k. But hopefully you have done your job to give them the self-confidence and strength to get through things. We have tried to raise our children to think for themselves and be their own people. We have tried to be their parents, not their "friends". That's not to say we are unloving and standoffish, but instead, we know how to say no and to stick to it. Our children have experienced delayed gratification whereby they had to wait for something they wanted. Our children have been required to help out without the promise of money when they were done. (You do chores because you are part of this family, not because you are getting paid). And in the end, they have both turned out to be really great kids. They are kind, funny, intelligent, caring, independent, mature, goofy, sweet kids.
So, I am off to do some more gardening today, my favourite way to spend a weekend. I will get help to dig out and lift and very big "ugly" hydrangea from its current spot to a not yet decided new spot. I want a different shrub there. One that is more showy and colourful which will show up better from the road and be enjoyed while sitting at my new bistro set on the front porch.
Enjoy your mother's day and well done on all the things you do!