Here I sit recollecting on my Mother’s Day memories all 12 years I’ve been a mother and honestly, I feel kind of cringy about it.
I’ve had some great Mother’s Days, but I’ve also had some not-so-great Mother’s Days. I’m not wholly jaded to the idea of celebrating but it just seems like a bunch of made up to do about nothing. Mothers should be celebrated, especially me, but why do we get one singular day and why does that celebration usually consist of a school made gift that doubles for a grade in Art class? Or better, let’s exercise all energy and exhaustion dressing kids and making reservations only to still wait an hour or more to eat while getting rigor mortis in your elbow holding a baby all the while trying to consume delectable cuisine without dropping them on your baby’s head.
I am a single mother of four amazing children (ages, 12, 11, 11, 4) and I do feel that if I am meant to do something, it is to be a mother. Amidst the chaos that is my life, I long for a day, one day where I can just sit and drink a cup of coffee while reading my kindle in peace…in a house, I didn’t have to clean. Is it too much to ask that we get what we really want for Mother’s Day….a day of solitude sans kids, a clean house that we didn’t clean, a spa day, a day out with your girlfriends, a quiet room with a hot cup of coffee to be consumed while hot?
My dad tells me that he worries I stretch myself so thin working and doing for my kids that one day, I’m going to break. But just when he thinks that one thing or situation would’ve been “it,” I keep going.
My 12-year-old son just walked into my office and asked me what I was doing.
Kyan, “What are you writing?”
Me, “A personal story on Mother’s Day.”
Kyan, “Oh for your AMB thing. Is that this weekend or next?”
Me, “Yes, and it’s next weekend.”
Kyan, “What do you want for Mother’s Day?”
Me, “You to clean your room.”
Kyan, “Done. What else?”
Me, “Those earrings at that store I showed Kamdyn. They’re handmade from a local jeweler, like less than $20.”
Kyan, “Done, I’ll mow the yard this weekend. Do you remember that bean heart thing that lady pulled me out of class to make in first grade? I didn’t know why she chose me but then we learned that all the kids with single moms got to make a special craft. I was so afraid that I used too many beans and too much glue and that it wasn’t going to dry clear or that it would break.”
Me, “I sure do. I still have it.”
Kyan, “Do you still have all those clay pots?”
Me, “Yes, in my bathroom cabinet, all 9 of them.”
Kyan, “What about that letter I wrote you when you were crying on the bathroom floor that one Mother’s Day and I slid it under the door? Then you opened the door and we went to get donuts and just had donuts for breakfast and lunch.”
Me, “Kyan, stop, you’re about to make me cry right now.”
Kyan, “But what was your favorite Mother’s Day gift?”
Me, “I don’t know, that’s what I’m trying to write about. I don’t really like Mother’s Day until you just reminded me of all these things….”
Kyan, “How can the best mom in the world not like Mother’s Day? That’s just dumb. Don’t I have a soccer game next weekend? Did you wash my uniform?”
Me, “Possibly, if you win the games this weekend. Yes, it’s on the couch. Oh, we have family pictures this weekend. Did you want a hair-cut?”
Kyan, “What am I going to wear?”
Me, “You’re wearing a blue polo. Charlotte will wear a colorful dress. The brothers will wear a green and light blue polo. I think I’m wearing a red dress.”
Kyan, “Remember that picture of us where we wore polos and you wore a red shirt? So kind of like that but with Charlotte?”
Me, “Awe, yes, I had those pictures done for Mother’s Day. That is one of my favorite pictures except that Charlotte isn’t in it.”
Kyan, “Well, you’re going to have the best Mother’s Day this year. I’ll clean my room, well, I’ll clean it by this Friday because I want a friend to spend the night. I’ll mow the yard on Saturday after we win my soccer game. I think Kamdyn made you a ceramic pizza. He said the Art teacher gave him extra clay and that he didn’t want to make another clay pot and you love pizza. We’ll get our pictures done and we won’t fight about it. Can we ride our bikes to that store for those earrings or is that too far? But can you pay the tax? Can you write all this down so we can tell the brothers? I don’t think I can remember all this.”
Me, “Yes, I sure can. Go to bed so I can finish writing. I love you.”
Kyan, “Love you more, sorry I’m such a jerk to you sometimes.”
Not even five minutes later, I hear Kyan talking to Siri. “Hey Siri, set a reminder to mow the yard on Saturday, bring home cleats and white Nike running shoes. Wait, hey Siri, text Kamdyn….”
Okay, so I love Mother’s Day and art projects even if they do double as a grade. Those letters and obligatory drawings the kids make, bring ‘em on. Just when I think this pre-teen phase may kill me, or that rubber-band may break, I don’t break. I’m at ease and at peace with all the chaos that is my life. Happy Mother’s Day to me and mine and you and yours.