Let me start this by saying that I’m not the kind of woman who expects much for Mother’s Day. My children are just beginning to comprehend the significance of their own birthdays so Mother’s Day rings in somewhere between bathing and eating peas on their excitement meter.
What I do expect from Mother’s Day is a million questions by others on the day after. Mothers always ask each other, “What did they do for you?” Everyone wants to know about the gifts you received, the poems you were read, the number of grapes you were fed, but no one wants to hear, “Well, I made a batch of waffles that everyone hated. When I asked them if they got me anything, they fetched me a bouquet of grass from the lawn mower bag.”
This will be my sixth Mother’s Day, and if history has taught me anything, it’s that I should prepare for nothing other than more questions and more lawn mower bag grass.
My low expectations were probably shaped by the precedent I set in my first year of motherhood. Instead of treating myself to a pedicure or something I would have actually enjoyed, I made the proclamation that we should all go to the zoo. I’m not sure why I thought catatonic animals in enclosures would blow a little more air into our lungs. In an act of even greater mystery, my son glossed over every exotic animal in favor of watching a duck with a lame leg swim in a circle. I also failed to realize how the impending due date of my second baby would leave me feeling as though my uterus were going to fall out on the concrete and be feasted upon by a panda bear with Stockholm Syndrome.
The years that followed brought minor improvements. I opted for meals out instead of zoo outings with three children. School-mandated clay projects began to occupy my nightstand. They used the word “please” more and the words “I’m running away” less.
Don’t misunderstand me; I reap small rewards every day with my children. They’re just more easily found when you’re not searching for that pot of gold. The tradition of Mother’s Day, while right in its intention, places a lot of pressure on everyone to be excited about dandelions. I’d just like to see it named more aptly. Some suggestions:
Happy Sleep 14 Extra Minutes Day!
Happy Your Husband Can’t Call Brunch The Dumbest Meal Ever Invented Day!
Happy Forget Your Laundry Day!
Happy Burnt Toast Day!
Happy Your Acknowledgement Is Over By 9:15 a.m. Day!
Happy Why Exactly Are We Taking a Hike Day!
Happy You Got Some Crap Made Out of Construction Paper Day!
Happy You’re Still Changing 8 Diapers Today Day!
Happy Thank God Gift Receipts Were Invented Day!
Happy At Least It’s Not NFL Season Day!
Happy The Dog Would Have Made Better Pancakes Than This Day!
Happy Can We Just Get Through This One Meal Without Grease Stains On My Gloria
Vanderbilt Tunic Day!
Happy You Get To Choose The Movie But It Still Needs To Feature Russell Crowe Day!
Happy Even The Strangers At Church Would Have Given You A Rose Day!
Happy No One Expects You To Do The Dishes But They’re Not Doing Them Either Day!
Happy Mother’s Day to all the women shaping the people who make all the above absurdity worthwhile.