For a few years now I’ve told Andy I don’t want him to worry about doing anything for me for Mother’s Day.
One part of me thinks it’s a bit of a Hallmark holiday, and the other part of me perhaps doesn’t feel worthy of a big fuss. I also don’t want him or the children to feel pressured to make something special happen each year.
Mother’s Day can be complicated…we don’t all have ideal relationships with our mothers. Maybe we’ve even lost our mother to death or estrangement. Not all women decide to -or- have the ability to become mothers. Perhaps we are mothers but it’s hard for us. Or maybe we’ve lost a child.
I think I wanted to avoid any potential dysfunction with my own family by just skipping it all together.
Well, I hate to admit it, but that left me feeling sad.
At first it was fine. I justified my “let’s skip Mother’s Day” approach by dismissing it as being overly commercial or by subtly shaming myself for wanting any fanfare.
Then one day I woke up and realized I’d pretty much stripped every bit of fanfare from my entire calendar year.
“Don’t make a fuss about Mother’s Day.”
“Let’s not exchange gifts for Christmas.”
“I don’t need anything for my birthday.”
Year after year would go by without much personal celebration at all.
I would never take away from celebrating Andy or the children, and I kept up with gifts and acknowledgements for my parents and siblings.
I just skipped myself.
I actually don’t think it was all bad.
It helped me focus on things that are far more meaningful than presents…
At Christmas I relished the music, cookies, family time, and gift giving. For my birthday last year I raised $1,120 which provided clean water for 37 people who desperately needed it.
However, the “forget the fuss” resolve also failed to celebrate my journey of motherhood, the survival and growth of our marriage year after year, and the fact I am alive each year to see another July 12.
In the end, it wasn’t such a good resolve after all.
What’s wrong with celebration and fanfare?
Nothing at all.
My friend Marie takes birthdays and holiday seriously. She reminds me that day-to-day life is hard and we should celebrate the special occasions! We should fuss over others AND ourselves!
As I continue to read and journal and dig into my emotional health I’m understanding things I need to accept and things I need to let go.
I need to let go of my fierce devotion to “not needing anything” and I need to accept the fact I’m worthy of fuss and frivolity.
Even typing that out still makes me cringe.
I’ve been keeping Andy up-to-date on my personal revelations, so he knew I was open to (and probably needing) some special attention this Mother’s Day.
Boy did he deliver!
I made dinner and we all enjoyed fat slices of pie while sharing our roses (highlights) and thorns (challenges) of the day.
Sunday morning I woke up to homemade buttermilk pancakes which were divine. Andy cooked everything and cleaned it all up. Woo hoo!
We cozied up in the living room and the kids all presented me with thoughtful and hilarious homemade cards :)
Now before you have visions of a guy in the doghouse for buying his wife a vacuum, let me explain.
We’ve had our blender since we got married about 15 years ago. It’s been a decent and reliable blender. It can totally handle things like milkshakes and salad dressings, but it’s not powerful or sophisticated enough for things like ice cubes and spinach. I’ve drooled over Vitamix and Blentec blenders for years but simply cannot justify their hefty price tags. A food blogger I love shared how much she likes her Ninja blender and, at about a quarter the price of the others, I decided to add it to my Amazon wishlist.
For the past year or so, I’ve been enjoying protein shakes as a part of my health and fitness journey. I’ve really wanted to make them thicker by adding ice, but my blender just can’t handle it. So you can imagine how excited I was to receive this practical yet very thoughtful gift!!
I also love that it’s a gift the whole family can enjoy! We christened it last night by making delicious mango-banana-coconut-orange juice smoothies that everyone devoured!
After watching our Michigan church’s sermon web stream, we all got dressed and headed out to a local sushi restaurant for lunch.
The kids were nervous about having lunch at a place so far outside their comfort zones and I was nervous when we walked in and they all started complaining and holding their noses at the hostess stand! Fish smells are pretty unavoidable at sushi restaurants LOL
We sat down and browsed the menu for items the kids might enjoy and decided on crab rangoon, tempura chicken, and a side of noodles.
Andy ordered steamed pork dumplings for the two of us since we loved them so much the first time we dined at this restaurant.
The kids all tried the rangoon and liked it, but they were HUGE fans of the pork dumplings! Who knew?!
I cannot tell you how proud I was of them for trying new foods. I love food from all around the world and I’ve always hoped we could enjoy lots of interesting food as a family. This was a huge step in the right direction :)
They were all so cute using their chopsticks and opting to eat their noodles out of the tiny bowls intended for soy sauce LOL
On the ride home my belly and heart were so full. I told Andy how much I appreciated the effort he put into making my day so special. I also realized how much the celebration was about all of us, not just me.
Without Andy and the children, I wouldn’t be a mother. This whole fantastic celebration was about all of us. My most precious gifts in this whole world.
I’m incredibly thankful and humbled that I’ve been so privileged to have this amazing family despite all my flaws and failures.
That’s something worth celebrating.