Posing in 2014 for a Mother's Day picture - we were waiting to travel to China to bring home our Liliana :)
My "Happy Mother's Day" door a few years ago boasting numerous crafts and cards from my family!
My family for last year's (2016) Mother's Day
One of my favorite Mother's Day memories - May 2016
The card my then pre-school aged, Parker, (now 10 yrs) gave me.....I was not even close to 41 - at the time! ;)
Okay, so on with my rant.....yep, it's about to become one so hold on!
Most of my life we have celebrated Mother's Day with a brunch, lunch or dinner out with my mother, my mother in law, my sister in laws, maybe even grandma's. Basically whoever is in town, available and willing and their children and spouses. We end up with quite a large table of guest in a local eatery that quickly turns to chaos. This typically turns in no adults (okay, well the men seem to manage) actually being able to talk over the constant barrage of "mom" being yelled out by various children. Or orders being decided with the help of, you guessed it, Mom. Or the ever present bickering, arguing, laughing, crying, etc. of the various children at the table. Or the need for at least one of the numerous children to be requesting an escort to the bathroom pretty much on an ever constant rotating basis throughout the mealtime. Now, I know I left out the spilling of drinks, crawling under the table, crying over what they order or how quickly what they ordered comes out or need to order more, but I didn't want to send you precious mothers out there into a panic attack as you recall these very instances from your own life as you read about mine! And don't even get me started on the when we make the decision we are going to do the meal at our house for everyone and the guys are going to take care of everything....um, no. Never actually happens.
So what is my point? Well, does any of the above sound like a celebration of moms to anyone else? I'm just going to go ahead and lay it out (think of me what you will!).....It doesn't to me!
It sounds like pretty much a snippet of any regular day of any mom's year. This is what we do. It doesn't mean we don't love it (okay, so maybe "love it" is too strong here ;), but it doesn't sound like an appropriate way to celebrate moms to me. In fact, it actually makes me quite anxious to think about. Every year I really want to do the whole brunch, lunch or dinner celebration thing with my family. I am actually the one that is typically organizing it so it's not like I am drug along kicking and screaming or something. I think in my head and heart this sounds like the "right" celebration for Mother's Day.
It sounds down right blissful when I say it to myself each year. We will wake up (often times I am served a sweet little variation of breakfast in bed and given multiple hand made cards and/or crafts that I cherish!), head to church as a family and then enjoy a beautiful meal together as a family. I picture sunshine and birds chirping. Me in a darling dress having an incredible hair day with my make-up applied just right. All of my children dressed equally cute and well groomed and well behaved and, of course, my knight in shining armor (I mean husband) skipping up the sidewalk to our intended eatery. As a matter of fact, I think I build it up in my head so much each year that when the actual event doesn't measure up I feel like I need to smile through it anyway to show my adoring children and husband that this is exactly what I wanted anyway. Because, after all, this is Mother's Day and this is what I should want to do right? Spend it with the people that are responsible for that title? And adore Every. Single. Minute. I mean what kind of mother would I be if I didn't?
I'll tell you. I would be the mother that I actually am - and it has taken me many many years of motherhood to be able to admit this to myself, let alone the 3 of you that have continued to read this far!
I am a mother that LOVES my children with every fiber of my being. All five of them. Every day of the year. Each year of their precious lives. No matter what! I am a mother that is eternally grateful for each one of those children. The ones that came from my body and the ones that came to us through the miracle of adoption. I am a mother because I chose to be one - five times over (I know that several of you are questioning my actual sanity now - I don't blame you!;). I am a mother that loves doing all the "mothery" (just made up a word - go with it) things like going to the zoo, the library, school events, serving on the PTO, cheering loudly and embarrassing my kids at every sporting event they are part of. I am a mom who loves to cook for my family - every day of the week if I can. I actually love to serve them, truly love it (well, except for serving them by doing laundry - I could really pass on that serving opportunity!). I am a mom who enjoys bath time (mostly because I know bedtime comes next!!). I am a mom who loves to read stories and sing songs and take my older ones on driving lessons and to pick out a tie for the next high school dance. And so so much more. I am a mom, like almost every other mom out there, hangs on every moment of our kids lives and falls all over herself to make their lives as amazing as we can.
But, just this one day of the year....the blessed Mother's Day...I would like to actually take a break from all of that. Not because I don't love it - most of the time. But, because it would be awesome to have just one day a year, since becoming a mother, that I have to think only of myself. And what could be even better than having just one day where I get to think only of myself - taking care of just me, me, me? How about throw some other moms in there for some great conversation, laughs and relaxation and it is starting to sound like EXACTLY the way I would love to spend my day being "celebrated"!
So this year that is exactly what I am doing! I have gathered up 5 of my girlfriend's and we are heading out to a mom's only dinner and a very "girlie" destination! We will not be worrying about what our little people are eating for dinner that night or how much of it they eat or when and how it gets cleaned up. We will not be giving baths and washing a drying hair or cleaning up the splattered water all over the bathroom. Or putting on pjs or reading the 5th "just one more" story for the evening. Or answering whatever need it may be that takes us back into their rooms or has us getting back out of bed to answer the knock at our door for the 12th time. Or threatening, cajoling or begging for them to put the electronics away, do homework, get off the phone or just get to sleep so they can get up for school the next morning. No way.....not this day!
We will be sitting at a table dressed in our darling dresses, having incredible hair days with our make-up applied just right while we have amazing glorious uninterrupted conversation about whatever we feel like talking about (which will most likely be our children :). Our orders will be taken by a waiter who will tell us he can't believe we are mothers because of course we all "look way to young and carefree to possibly be" (that's how I am picturing it of course!).
We will enjoy incredible (HOT - like not lukewarm, but actually HOT!) food that we did not have to shop for, cut coupons for, prepare or clean up. We will sip incredible drinks and indulge in rich desserts all while taking as much time as we want to enjoy. Then when we get home the house will be cleaned up, toys put away and kitchen back in order. The kids will all be tucked in bed where we can look in on their angelic little faces fast asleep and sigh to ourselves that we love them more than life itself. And we will fully appreciate that having been refreshed and renewed and feeling totally "celebrated" in the last few hours of sweet freedom that will carry us through the next 364 days (again, this is how I am picturing it, of course :)
Selfish? Maybe. But can't we have just ONE day of the year where we are allowed that?
And, finally, to all of you mothers out there - I hope that you enjoy your day of celebration however it is that you chose (or are dragged) to. ;) Without mothers none of us would be here, that's for sure. And to all of you who are blessed to still have your mother here on earth; give her a big heartfelt "thank you" for being your mom and for the 364 days of the year that she does so without recognition or fanfare.
Me & my mother in law :)
My mom, my grandma (her mom) and my girls :)
Happy Mother's Day beautiful ladies!
And one more thing to help you all out:
Are you having trouble coming up with a great last minute Mother's Day "date" idea? Looking for something fun and different that is more than just simply dinner out? Check out DateCrawl on the app store. It's a free app that will lay out the entire date for you. "Datecrawls" are submitted by other users and verified before being added to the site. My husband and I assembled a great team of programmers and developers a little over a year ago to build our latest app - Datecrawl. We felt there was such a need for this and based on our users the public agreed! There is nothing like it out there and it will CHANGE the way you date :)
Check it out and have a great Mother's Day ladies!