Laugh · Parent

Happy Messy Mother’s Day

I’d argue that Mother’s Day is a pretty messy holiday. We mothers often wake up with great anticipation and try as we might to lower our expectations, most of us usually fail. Did I have warm coffee in a comfortable spot this morning? Yes, but were my kids literally climbing all over me? Also, yes.

At brunch, my youngest spilled her entire adult-sized glass of water on me, just as my middle was clogging the toilet in the one person bathroom. SO, right after I plunged the toilet, I grabbed as many paper towels as I could to clean up the small lake in the dining area. When we got home, the youngest spilled an entire vase of water/flowers (given to me by my sweet husband), and the dog rolled in the mud. (after Cute Tall Guy went to work).

Fortunately, the card they picked out is…hilarious.

So we laugh. We laugh (and maybe cry a little) at all the crazy in this wonderful life with children.  Even though Instagram and the media would love to portray life as an endless sea of ease, we all know that often joy comes through hardship, perseverance, tears, spilled drinks, and various bathroom mishaps (public and private). And I hope that as I muddle my way through this motherhood journey I am cultivating home for my children. And peace.

I hope that they know I love them and know them and appreciate them. I hope they know I am their biggest fan (oh, and also their dad), that even in the mess, I loved them while I carried them, and I love them still-in the most unique only a mom can love them sort of way.

A few years ago, on our family beach trip, our mom won a game of Apples to Apples by a long shot. Like, she schooled us. Entirely. And she did so because she has spent 40 years knowing us. Knowing our spirits, knowing our struggles, and knowing our humor. In this day of way too much media and way too many outside distrations, may we all know our kids this well. I’m still learning, but I hope they can keep coming to me in confidence when their problems are much bigger than clogged toilets and lost shoes. As an adult, one of the things I appreciate about my own childhood was that mom and dad let me be who I am. They never made me feel too much or too little. They appreciated me and built me up. They knew me. They paid attention. I hope to emulate them.

So Happy Mother’s Day to you, wherever you are on the journey. Whether you are shaping little lives right now, long to be shaping little lives, or have taken a back seat to watch your babies carry the torch to the next generation.  Whether you’re sitting with your mom right now, or missing her. May your mess be beautiful and joyful and even a little tearful when it needs to be. May you give yourself and your children grace. May you love freely and know deeply. May we pay attention and keep our eyes attuned to the precious gifts we have (biological, adopted, spiritual, or surrogate). May you walk with other moms and grandmas while you share this awesome journey.

May you feel and give love.

…And hopefully avoid clogged toilets, spilled drinks, and muddy dogs. Just for today.