On Mother’s Day, most of us have relatively modest goals. Sleeping, have a bite to eat, maybe take a moment to read a book or do something for ourselves. Mine involves a massage, a movie and some Chinese food. My nine-year-old Benjamin has a baseball game at 2pm today, so we will see how many of those three items can be accomplished.
Mother’s Day today started much like any of our other days. Around 6 AM, my three-year-old Emily climbed into bed and proceeded to fall back asleep covering about 80% of my hair head and neck. Around 6:45 AM, my five-year-old Molly tried to climb in with me, realized that her sister was already in bed with me, and basically lost her mind.
Please note, that yesterday Molly had a 10-minute soliloquy about how much she loved me and how she was going to feed me breakfast in bed and massage my face. Today, she’s having a stroke because her sister had the audacity to get into bed with me first.
Around 7:45, Dad was a good Samaritan and got up out of bed and encouraged the girls to get up with him. Molly asked dad open to the present she bought with her birthday money last night at Target. (I used the promise of opening this gift this morning as the incentive I needed to coax her into bed last night.)
Of course, she was excited to open this gift first thing in the morning. Dad told her she had enough toys and that she should go back in her room and play with something else instead. A minor meltdown ensued. As much as you try to go back to sleep, you can’t help but hear all the chaos.
Through all the shouting, you know that the kids are having pancakes and sausage for breakfast. You know that somebody hid the remote. You know that somebody is not playing with somebody else. You know that somebody is sitting on someone else. You know that someone is thirsty, and that someone else didn’t want milk to drink. It is the usual chaos of any other day.
Today is Mother’s Day, but it is still a day like any other. And everything, and everybody is crazy.
Today, we moms all pretend to sleep in hopes that maybe we could have a couple of minutes to ourselves.
I would like to offer this perspective.
We lost our son Alex when he was only two months old. It was a time in life that was crazy with diapers to change and bottles to wash. I was so tired with the overwhelming work that comes with raising a two-year-old and a two-month-old, that I was so desperate for a break in all the work.
After Alex died, there are no more diapers to change, no more bottles to wash. The house was quiet, and I could sleep as long as I wanted. It was the darkest time in my life, and I could not get over how terrible I felt, for *ever* wishing to have less work as a mom.
Everything we do for our kids is a blessing. Each time we drop somebody off to an activity, when we give somebody a bath, when we send book fair money. Tying shoes, finding a ballet leotard, checking math homework, reminding someone to practice for piano, dropping somebody off to a birthday party or a baseball game, wiping a butt, washing someone’s hands, quizzing someone on spelling words, braiding someone’s hair, finding a baseball jersey, making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Those tasks are an embarrassment of riches.
It is easy to get sucked into the details in everyday life. I would like to remind all of us overworked and tired mothers… The tasks of motherhood are blessings. There will be a time in our lives when we don’t have all this work, and we can look back smile how busy life used to be.
Today, like any other Mother’s Day, lean into the chaos and appreciate what a blessing it is to live in our world where we have kids to wake us up, kids to tuck in at night.
We have been blessed with families and without these crazy kids, we wouldn’t be mothers. Happy Mother’s Day mama – you deserve it!