Pape et moi

I’m not sure what I expected on my first Mother’s Day as an honoree. Gold fairy dust falling on me when I woke up? Pape taking extra-long naps? To be honest, I guess I thought the day would kind of, sort of be all about me – and I was looking forward to that part! But in reality, it’s been more about the one who made me a mom and thinking about the one who mom-ed me.

Beautiful flowers from the bébé’s daddy

At church this morning I joined the mom-forces in the back. This is where we moms, and the occasional dad, congregate with our wee ones, bouncing and pacing, ready to dart out the door as soon as our little one decides to start squawking at full volume.

As I stood there bouncing Pape, I looked at my friend’s face and saw my own emotions reflected in it. “Isn’t today supposed to be easier than this? Aren’t the babies supposed to be calm and happy? Aren’t we supposed to be relaxed and feel beautiful and rested? Today of all days, aren’t I supposed to feel like a super-mom and not a pooped-mom?”

I remember when I was about eight years old asking my dad why there wasn’t a ‘Kid’s Day’. He answered that Kid’s Day was every day of the year. I thought he was taking some liberties there. But I know now that he wasn’t.

All these years, I think I’ve been giving my mom the wrong gifts on the one day a year set aside to honor her. I mean sure, painted-rock paperweights are the gifts that keep on giving and you can’t ever have too many candleholders made by sticking one’s thumb in a lump of clay.

If I could go back, I would also give Mom the gift of time to herself. An afternoon nap. An undisturbed bath. A good book.

I would give her the gift of touch. Hugs. A shoulder massage. Kisses. Holding her hand when we walk.

I would give her ‘action verb’ gifts. Doing the dishes. Folding the laundry. Making dinner.

I would give her the gift of words. Thank you. I love you. You are an amazing Mom.

Along with these, I would still give her those awesome paperweights and candleholders. But I if I could go back, I would give her these gifts all year long, not just on Mother’s Day. Because all year long, every day, she is my Mom. And she totally deserves some gold fairy dust.