Mother's Day... the day perfect angels everywhere arrive at the foot of Mom's bed with flowers, breakfast and clean fingernails. It's a smooth-sailing day of no fighting, gourmet meals and relaxation -- a time for Mom to just sit back and enjoy.
Isn't that the way it goes in your house?
This year, Mother's Day was something totally different. I discovered true feelings, learned some hard lessons. It was beautiful and difficult and everything in between.
Let's start at the beginning.
The boys came home from preschool mid-week with goodies for me. Two mysterious envelopes containing what I assumed were nice words taunted me -- should I give a peek? Let's get this out in the open... I'm one of those girls. I am terrible at surprises. I've discovered locations of birthday parties, hidden gifts and surprise date nights. If someone says "don't open 'til Christmas," that's usually translated as "open this as quickly as possible." My self control is not my #1 quality (but you should know that by now).
So back to the envelopes. I stared at them, wondering the contents... were they hand written? Did they say something cute and funny inside them? The kids would have no idea if I checked it out and sealed it back up, right?
But I didn't do it.
I realized I wanted the kids to see my authentic surprised, happy and emotional face as I first glimpsed at what they had made for me for such a special day. Because in all honesty, Mother's Day is SO not about me. It's about the kids having a chance to share their feelings and teaching them to give to others once in a while. There are lessons in days like this and it's important for them to see what others do and to honor them for it. So I put leaned the envelopes on the candlesticks on our dining room table, and waited patiently for my day to come.
Mother's Day arrived. I got to sleep in until 8:20 AM and woke up to beautiful flowers and a card from Jeff waiting for me. I climbed down the stairs to a piping hot cup of coffee. And as I curled myself up on the couch to get my caffeine on and open up my handmade goodies, this is what I saw...
How did I not see that during the few days the gifts were left on the table, a certain monkey decided to inspect the contents of the package? I felt a wave of sadness. Now we had to search for the gift I had waited so long -- like a lifetime -- to open.
We scoured the house -- inside toy buckets and under furniture, in trash cans and behind appliances. Where could it be?
We never did find it. And a certain little girl fessed up to opening it but still refuses to share the secret spot it ended up. I hope there will be a day when I discover what happened to my gift but, until then, a piece of me will always feel disappointed. And I will continue to doubt that this patience that everyone claims is a virtue isn't really responsible for my son being robbed of seeing my face on Mother's Day morning.
UPDATE: I found out what was in the envelope and it actually wasn't lost. Brady made me a bead necklace in class. The devastating part: I thought Lucy made it in parent/tot with Jeff and threw it away because I didn't want her to choke on it. My heart hurts.
Tomorrow: How Mother's Day feels since Lucy came home.