Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mother's Day

Mother. Mum. Mom. Mommy.  Mama.  Variations on a theme.  I'm still amazed that I'm a mother.  I know it's real, but I'm still amazed.  It's definitely more work than I ever dreamed, and there's no training other than "on-the-job", but it's worth every minute.  And once a year people decide to honour their mothers.  It's a complex event, requiring bookings in restaurants, gifts, and many different ways to say "I love you". 

When we were kids, the church leaders thought it would be nice to have everyone wear flowers for their mothers -- there was even a song which went "Flowers for mother we bring today, Flowers to brighten her busy way..." and right now the rest is lost somewhere in my memory.  It'll be back, I'm sure.  The kids with moms got red flowers, the kids whose mothers had died got white, and those with stepmothers wore pink.  Now I find that shocking, but at the time I didn't think much of it other than there were a few kids with white flowers, and I know my heart went out to them.  How did they feel, I wonder.  I'm sure it was dreadful.

We put so much emotion into one day -- what my mom often said, and what I say to my crew, is that I want our relationships to be year-round, not just focused on one day a year.  But what a day, or weekend, I guess.  Somehow the stars configured that the guys were out on Friday night -- drove to the lake with Tom and some furniture we're taking to the cottage.  They stayed overnight with the dog.  Now that doggy is cute as, but there's kid #4, if I ever saw one.  When things are quiet, as in no footsteps bouncing around, you know she's up to something -- loves to chew on a variety of items.  And come to think of it, her daily gift is her pink, licking tongue, doggy kisses.  Nicole had Friday off, so she spent the night with my mom -- grandmother to Nicole.  Amazing.  An empty quiet house.  After a while, it was too empty and too quiet.  The elusive dilemma -- wanting some time to just do what I want, then having it and not really liking it, missing the noise and bustle.  But I managed to fill the space with two movies:  Amreeka (partially shot in Winnipeg, it turns out) and Julie and Julia.  And I'd booked a little beauty appointment for Saturday morning without considering it would fall right before the big day.  So the spa was packed solid with a variety of women having treatments.

Three giggly, breathy young women in their 20s were relaxing for a while with snacks and coffee before they headed off to the pool.  One was going away for a week.  The other talked about moving back home --  with baby and fiancee, to save a bit of money before the wedding.  And the 3rd was also planning to be at home for a while.  When #1 offered to let her stay in her home, #3 blithely stated that "Mom cooks for me; you don't".  "Just like the old days", said #2.  Siblings.   I couldn't resist:  "Happy mother's day!"   More loud laughing -- "And the dog", said #2.   I smiled.  Fortunately the siren call of the pool was strong, and off they trotted, clad in white bathrobes, yapping all the way.

Lucky mom indeed.  We are lucky.  We have the ups and downs, the hard days and the hilarious.  I love the chatting, the humour, the ideas, the back talk, the personalities emerging and growing.  That's what I wanted, and that's what I got.  Three independent, strong, assertive human beings.  What a treasure.  When I found out I was pregnant with the twins, I remember crying on the phone to my mother:  "How am I ever going to love them all as much as the first one?"  Naive, I know.  But mom told me that a mother's love is the kind that expands to love all who come her way.  Yes, now I know that to be true.

And that gang coughed up the gifts, not that I was asking for them.  Flowers yesterday.  A gorgeous bunch of irises (a real favourite) and some feathery mums, which complement the tulips I'd brought home the other day.  This morning resulted in CDs:   K.D. Lang's Hymns of the 49th Parallel; Van Morrison's Greatest Hits; and Lyle Lovett in one of his earlier works.  Earrings.  A book marker.  A bracelet.  Home made cards.  Hand drawn wrapping paper.  Overwhelming with their generosity and interest in finding something for me.  Then we hit Sals for a breakfast out!  Lots of fun, and I indulged in one of my faves, eggs benny.

There's a mother thousands of kilometres away who is waiting for her 16 year old to return home -- Jessica Watson, the teenager who is almost finished her solo sailing trip around the world, is due back in Sydney on the 15th.  I've been following this smart and strong young Aussie woman via her blog as she has documented her solo journey around the globe.  Alone other than her satellite phone and email for company.  She's looking forward to getting her drivers' license, go figure.  And I'll bet a lot of money her mum is looking forward to having her home.  At least for a little while.  The bravery and and letting go on the part of her mother is impressive.  And Jessica is planning more adventures... 

Happy mother's day!

1 comment:

  1. What a great entry, Brig. I love your writing and this one touched my heart especially this year.