Mother’s Day, Just Whose Day Is It?

Me, my babies, and some leftover baby weight on my very first Mother's Day.

Me, my babies, and some leftover baby weight on my very first Mother’s Day.

Ah the month of May. When snow is a distant memory and the showers of April give way to fragrant flowers and fields of green. It is truly the month  of renewal and rebirth. How fitting that it is the month we celebrate the ultimate symbol of birth, motherhood.

Motherhood is certainly a post that deserves honor. To be a mother is, or at least is supposed to be, about the complete giving of oneself for the betterment of her child, the next generation, the future of the world. It all goes back to mom who has has wiped many a hiny, kissed many a boo boo, and dried many a tear. Whether we have a relationship with her or not, we all owe something to the woman who brought us into this world, and/or the woman who raised us…not always the same person.

And so, we do this in the beginning of May time and time again. We have saluted our mothers with macaroni necklaces and burnt toast in bed and then later on massage gift certificates and brunches at overbooked restaurants. We have put aside a day devoted to our mother…and then it changes…

Growing up I looked forward to someday having my own Mother’s Day. I remember asking “We have Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, when is it Kid’s Day” to which I always got “Kid’s day is everyday.” NOW I understand that statement, as I drag my arse up the stairs to calm a fearful toddler and explain for the 80th time that there’s no monster at 10pm, when I, after a demanding commute and job can hardly keep my eyes open. NOW I know why this day is so important. I’m busy, I’m tired, I’m stressed, but I do what I have to because these children depend on me. HONOR ME DAMMIT!

There was no time I yearned for Mother’s Day more than when I was infertile. Thoughts of “Will I ever have my own Mother’s Day” would contaminate my ability to celebrate my own mother. Mother’s Day became like this brass ring I would never reach. Then it happened…with the help of technology I was a mother to be with two babies conceived the week of Mother’s Day. The next year I would finally get it, my induction into that special Mother’s Day club, the one I feared I’d never have entry to. The following year I celebrated Mother’s Day with two babies in my lap…for about 4 minutes. The rest of the day was spent cleaning, cooking, setting out appetizers, utensils, and the perfect pot of coffee for my own mother who needs it like the rest of us need oxygen. THIS is my special day?

My first Mother’s Day was more work for me than any previous one I could remember. In my attempts to please my mother and grandmother I lost sight of a new reality, the reality that in fact this was MY day too. My day to be pleased as much as everybody else.

The road since this epiphany has been anything  but smooth. The days leading up to Mother’s Day are plagued with guilt for wanting some peace. My mother, still blissfully remembering the years it was solely her day, still wants that attention. My grandmother, now a great grandmother, may be alone if I don’t step up to the plate and hold some kind of party or luncheon. However, forgive me for being selfish, but I NEED my day. While mom and grandma may feel a little lonely if all they get is a card and flowers, I may go off the deep end if I don’t use this one Hallmark approved free pass to get my husband to take the kids to the park so I can just take a nap.

You see, sometime after mom’s admission that you never got that toast right and she hated wearing tacky noodle necklaces, Mother’s Day takes on a new meaning. It’s not just about them, it’s about YOU. The grown ass woman who is now the exhausted and over committed adult. YOU deserve a break. Mom, grandma and mother in law need to step away from the plate. This is your ball and you have a right to knock it out of the park in any fashion you fancy.

So this Mother’s Day I  am taking a stand and finally saying this is MY day and I will spend it however I want in whatever way makes ME happy. To the older generation YOU had your days of glory, move on and read your cards in quiet like the commercials say you are supposed to. But, if it really bothers you that much, you know all that peace and quiet that your daughters don’t usually get, you can always offer to take those grandchildren to the overcrowded restaurant so we can read our cards in silence and loneliness. Yes the grass is always greener on the other side, even in the month of May.

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13 thoughts on “Mother’s Day, Just Whose Day Is It?

  1. What a very selfish way of thinking this is what Mother’s Day is about. I’m sure you find plenty of “me” time at several times throughout the year. As your mother and grandmother sit home alone, I hope you keep in mind that they will not always be here on this earth. This time spent with them is fragile. Enjoy YOUR mother’s day.

    • Though I understand your view of this let me reiterate that I do PLENTY for my mother and grandmother the rest of the year. My life is very busy and exhausting and in an over committed society sometimes we need to be a little bit selfish.

  2. Wanting alone time on Mother’s Day is certainly not selfish.Dads usually get all of Father’s Day to do as they please, deservedly so. No need to be shamed or feel guilty for wanting a much needed break. I asked my fam to all pitch in so that the moms get a chunk of time to spend as they wish. It works for us and everyone’s satisfied.just my situation though.

    Tara, I hope you are able to reclaim some blissful guilt free time for yourself! Have a wonderful Mother’s Day!

  3. I get it! Good for you for taking a stand. I hope you have a wonderful Mother’s day doing things that make you happy!

  4. I hope your stand leaves you lonely in the long run. The boys can drop you off a card when your 60 and you can sit alone reading it.

    • If they’re wives work full time like I do then not only will I totally get it, I will offer to take her kids for the day if she needs some alone time.

  5. With any hope the boys will pick good wives who enjoy “Family” time and value each other. Even if it’s a day at home. Then you’ll have all that free time. I’m sorry. I just find this entire article self absorbed and selfish. Take it for what you want. But I’m done w/ this blog.

    • I did have family time with my children. Which is what I wanted that day. And I am a good wife. To imply anything else is wrong when you don’t know a person and 100% of any situation. I certainly hope that my children will choose women who don’t pass judgement on others just for being honest about how they feel.

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