Welcome Update #49

5/13/2012

 
Bethany Schoeff, Columnist

A female radio DJ asked on air the other day, “Whom do you choose to make your priority on Mother’s Day?” to which the male DJ replied, “Yes.” 

My husband can attest to that:  “On Mother’s Day, I have to keep three women happy.”  A sad, but true fact when you’re a man who must appease, on the same day, his own mother, his mother-in-law, AND the mother of his children, all of whom are within driving distance, of course.  Unfortunately that means none of the women get honored by her children with a “day” the way she should.  

So, I have come to lower my expectations of this holiday.  I have realized over the years that I won’t ever get a “day.”  Yes, I am showered with homemade cards and precious gifts, but there is really nothing else about the day that makes it about me being a mother.  In fact, this kind of day makes me feel anything but relaxed and special.  I usually spend it getting up early, rushing around from place to place, going to a restaurant where I can’t eat, dealing with the stress, noise, and chaos of 21 people (12 of them kids) in one place, fighting off a headache and high blood pressure, and then scrambling to get everyone out the door so we can get home at a reasonable hour, since it’s my responsibility (“Day” or not) to see that the kids get to bed on time (it is a school night, after all).  Whew!

 Don’t get me wrong—this is not a narcissistic ranting, nor is it meant to be a woe-is-me post.   I love being a mom, I adore my three children, and I feel blessed that they honor me how they can.  But I don’t need a whole day to experience that.  Would it be nice to sleep in, be fed brunch in bed, and then be sent away to a spa for the rest of the day with a friend?  Certainly.  Actually, last year I got to spend part of Mother’s Day with my best friend; we went to the mall and got pedicures.  It was nice.  And relaxing.  And not stressful!  However, I felt guilty for not spending time with my “other mothers” on “their” day, and for not allowing my children to spend time with me on “my” day.  

Perhaps someday, in the distant future, I will have the chance to celebrate Mother’s Day how I want, to actually have a whole day, just for me . . . . but that would mean that we’d have an empty nest, and the kids would be far away, and there’d be no “other mothers” left on earth for us to honor.  I’m not ever going to wish for the opportunity for that type of Day.  I realize there are many now who don’t have a mom or can’t celebrate being a mom on Mother’s Day.  So, while I can, I will try to enjoy the holiday, relaxing or not, and feel blessed that I can still call myself a daughter, daughter-in-law, and mother.
 



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