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« Great Skin from the Inside Out | Main | Our First Puristics Controversy: What’s Your Opinion? »

Happy Mother’s Day!

Phew!  It’s the day AFTER Mother’s Day.  I made it another year - - but this year, I’m on top of the world.  For me, Mother’s Day can be the most complicated day of the entire year.  It certainly shouldn’t be because I’m truly blessed with four amazing children.  They’re generally happy, healthy, well-behaved and good students. We live a comfortable lifestyle and never worry about having enough food or clothing.  

Still, telling someone that you love them and trying to demonstrate that love is very tricky business.  I’m sure my kids think that their love for me is understood and that they shouldn’t have to do anything else.  By and large this is true.  And yet, I have always cherished the flower pots decorated with tiny handprints and the poems written by an unsteady hand with a chunky crayon.  Now that my children are older, I wondered if my sleepyhead 18 year old would remember what day it is when he stumbles down the stairs dressed for church or if my younger son would let the Family Guy humor have a rest for the day.  Would the girls snipe at each other over borrowed clothing?  What I learned this year is that all of this and more would happen, and I’d still be able to experience love and gratitude throughout the day.  
Mother’s Day 2011 was a wonderful day for me.  I didn’t get a single homemade card or gift (though I still love those).  There was no burnt toast in bed, no “world’s best mom” mugs and no promises to behave better. Instead, I received the following:
1. After walking around a track all night long raising money for the American Cancer Society as part of Relay for Life, my older daughter met me at 7:30 a.m so that she could come home from school for the day (165 mile drive) so I could spend the day with all four of my kids. They raised $70,000 for the American Cancer Society so I wasn't the only beneficiary of her commitment and energy.  She didn’t complain about her extreme fatigue all day long, even as she struggled to finish her English paper on the Aeneid (it wouldn’t take a night of no sleep to make me complain about that one).
2. My younger daughter had picked up on an off-handed comment I’d made months ago about a particular mom/love ring.  Unbeknownst to me, she’d found such a ring, ordered it (with the help of her father’s credit card) and had it engraved on behalf of her siblings.
3. My older son cancelled his plans with his best friend to search for tools and other cool and utterly useless things at our local VNA rummage sale in order to make his mom smile at brunch (which he helped make).
4. My younger son put on his work boots, grabbed the string trimmer and made our lawn and gardens look as if I’d hired a landscaping company.
5. The hugs were easy and free-flowing, all day.
6. We finished the day eating burgers (grass-fed beef or veggie) outside feeling like spring had finally come to New Jersey.
Yes, they’re all old enough to get along for 24 hours, run a load of dishes or laundry and heat up a cup of coffee for me.  They could have gone their separate ways or spent the day in front of re-runs of Top Gear or America’s Next Top Model.  They didn’t.  They chose me instead and said quiet thank you’s for each and every time I’ve chosen them instead. 
Happy Mother’s Day to all.


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