I’m not going to lie, I like occasions that celebrate me. I like birthdays. I like attention. I love presents, especially ones that I can wear. I’m not ashamed and I believe it’s okay to like all the above because I also love to celebrate others and see their faces when you give them gifts or experiences that mean something. So it’s a given that I would welcome Mother’s Day, now that I’m mom. Another day to be recognized and maybe receive some cards, flowers, and even a gift or two for doing the hardest, most rewarding job in the entire world? Count me in!
Some people might call Mother’s Day just another Hallmark holiday like Valentines Day. I’m guessing these people probably don’t have children. In my professional mommy opinion, moms should be celebrated everyday. Hello! Moms have to do really tough shit like pushing tiny humans out of their vaginas. And if that doesn’t work, we have to let doctors cut open our tummies, take out our insides, then the baby, then put our insides back in and sew us up. On top of that, out tits are now used for food and eventually deflate and sag. We get fat and kill ourselves to get thin again. Oh and sometimes our teeth shift, our hair falls out in patches, and we grow more hair in places it doesn’t belong like on our chins. So a day? Yeah, that’s the least we deserve!
Every year I look forward to Mother’s Day and every year I feel like I used to do on New Years Eve (you know the good old days before you became a parent or even part of a couple, when you got ready with girlfriends, dressed up, paid hundreds of dollars to go to a club where you wait an hour just to get a drink at the bar so you end up ordering three at a time, triple fist said drinks on the dance floor, and hope to find and kiss your soul mate at midnight–only to end up drunk and belligerent because your friend kissed the guy you were after when the ball dropped–which resulted in you drinking more, losing your wallet with your precious fake ID in it and having a major wardrobe malfunction by the end of the night.) Yeah, New Years Eve never lived up to the hype. It always disappointed but we looked forward to it each year anyway with renewed hope, a new little black dress, and amnesia about the last time.
Mother’s Day has kind of been like that for me. I looked forward to my first Mother’s Day as an almost new mother in her third trimester. My son was born at the end of March so I was going to be able to join the Mother’s Day Club a month or so later. I knew we would have family in town and I looked forward to receiving all the cheesy cards about being a mom on your first Mother’s Day. Cue the postpartum depression and Mother’s Day number one didn’t quite pan out the way I thought it would. Sitting at a Greek restaurant with your husband, baby, and in-laws pretending to enjoy their company, laugh at their cards, and ooh and ah at the new bracelets and Helen Ficalora charms they gave you while heavily medicated, forcefully holding tears back, and just wanting to go back to bed and sleep forever was not the Mother’s Day I had pictured. Someone should have given me a card that said, “Hope you experience all the joy and happiness being a new mom has to offer.” And when you opened it, it read, “JUST KIDDING!”
Mother’s Day two was going to be my do over. I considered it my first real Mother’s Day because I had finally kicked PPD’s ass, I was myself again and happy being a mom to my adorable son. I told, more like instructed my husband that he was to celebrate me in all my mommy glory that Sunday. Brunch, thoughtful cards, praise about my fabulousness as a wife and mommy, beautiful flowers, jewelry, the works. Mother’s day two would be a true testament to overcoming what I experienced in that first year of motherhood. Cue an unexpected tragedy that took me to New York that Sunday for Mother’s Day. I spent the afternoon drinking Cosmos with my aunt and Grandma, two amazingly fierce warrior moms I’m glad to call my family, before heading to a funeral the following morning. Not the worst of mother’s days, but not the big celebration from my husband I had envisioned. The cosmos and company weren’t so bad and I did get the jewelry when I returned South though.
This past Mother’s Day, I tried to lower my expectations. I knew my husband planned brunch at the club with our son and family who lives down here, meaning my father in law and brother in law. Cue my husband forgetting to even wish me a Happy Mother’s day the whole morning (he insists he did), the flowers he ordered never arriving, and others forgetting stuff too. Let’s just say the day went downhill from there.
So it remains to be seen what Mother’s Day four has in store for me. I left the meal planning to my husband. Maybe it will be brunch again or dinner if that’s more convenient. I have really lowered my expectations this year. I simply hope that everyone will just remember to show up and maybe even bring a card or two. No new bags, shoes, or jewelry are necessary. Acknowledgment of the job I do as a mom and maybe a few hours of peace, quiet, and alone time would be enough. A mom can still wish…