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A Non-Mother’s Day Post about Mother’s Day

I think I may be the only person who didn’t have a Mother’s Day post.  There was no reason; I just didn’t have anything to say.  Being with my mother makes me happy, and I hope that I always convey to her how important she is to me the other 364 days per year.  I am but a diluted version of her greatness; if she is a cubed woman, I am merely a squared woman.  So the holiday is a nice reminder to check in mentally and remember if I’ve told her lately that I love her.  A reminder to tell people how you feel about them I can get behind.  All the other trappings of the holiday, I can’t.  Especially breakfast in bed.  I do not eat upon awakening.

I can’t really eat for the first two or three hours.  I can drink coffee, but I can’t put food in my mouth.  Am I the only person who can’t eat first thing in the morning?

Anyway, the kids have a class on Sunday morning that I made them attend.  And we discovered that the ChickieNob’s teacher has been spelling her name wrong all year.  ALL year.  We finally got an explanation for why our daughter keeps asking us how to spell her own name, which… you know… seemed like an odd question.  But despite having spelled her name correctly on all forms, her teacher chose a different way to spell her name.  Odd.

The point being that on Mother’s Day, we had a chunk of time to read while the ChickieNob was in class having her name spelled wrong.  And Josh took this photo of me in a Starbucks.

Casual Head Shot

This is the story behind the photo.  I needed a casual head shot, so I sat down in a seat against the wall and waited for Josh to get our coffees.  As he was coming to our table with our coffee, this man overturned a 20-gallon bucket of water right at our table.  I was already sitting cross-legged on the bench, so I didn’t get wet, but we had to choose a different table since there was over an inch of water on the floor.

We moved to the center of the store, which didn’t have a neutral background, and then finally grabbed the chair next to a man that we had already determined was an undercover spy (is there really any other kind?).  I think my eyes look glazed-over in this photo, but it will have to do because it’s in focus.

Afterward, we went out to my parent’s house, where I got my Mother’s Day present, the only sort I will accept beyond pipe-cleaner bracelets.  My parents taught the twins how to ride a two-wheel bicycle.  The twins and my father and Josh went to set up, and then when my mother brought me over, they both took off on their bicycles, their little legs pumping, not wobbling at all.  The look on their faces as they turned the corner and started riding back to me made me burst into tears.  They were so proud of themselves, so excited to be on a bicycle, unencumbered by training wheels and the feelings that come with having something babyish attached to something grown-up.

Their smile was the manifestation of freedom.

All these little stories sort of sum up how I feel about the day.  It is ups and it is downs.  After going through infertility, it’s impossible to not feel something on Mother’s Day.  In a single day, the ChickieNob went from having her name spelled wrong to mastering bicycle riding, and I went from overturned water buckets to a photograph that I can use.  I went from being woken up by the twins with cards to thinking about how I cried in the parking lot after looking at baby clothes the day before to watching the twins with excitement as they pedaled to feeling the bittersweetness of aging.

And that’s sort of the way this kind of day goes.


1 Pepper { 05.13.13 at 8:16 am }

Love this. We had a similar day. We spent the day, just us 3, at a kids hands-on museum. We had a casual dinner out and marveled at our daughter’s appetite (it is remarkable to say the least). My husband gave me a collection of new photos in silly but pretty frames to decorate the bookshelves he just built for us. We had gotten to spend all day Saturday with my mom and mother-in-law so all in all, it was a pretty perfect weekend. And there definitely was not breakfast in bed.

Love the headshot, too. And glad you didn’t get soaked!

2 Kristin { 05.13.13 at 8:26 am }

I think the headshot is great!

As for Mother’s Day, I still have conflicted feelings. I identify a lot with this post.

3 Serenity { 05.13.13 at 8:31 am }

Yes, exactly how I feel about the day, too. Seriously, Mel, you put words to my own feelings and thoughts on nearly a daily basis. Thanks! 🙂


4 Catwoman73 { 05.13.13 at 9:11 am }

I love the head shot! I have no idea how old you are, but you look so young in that picture!

Mother’s Day was a bit of an up and down day for me, as well. I was grumpy because I was post night shift (read: extremely sleep deprived) and PMSing. Lovely. The weather was miserable, which did nothing for my mood. But Hubby and the wee woman got me an AWESOME gift, which totally lifted my spirits. Then we went to a huge, catered dinner with… oh, about half the Italian community around here. I was so proud of my little girl while we were there- she was a social butterfly, charming every person she spoke to (nothing like her painfully shy mother!). I’m so lucky to have her! Then AF decided to make her appearance, just to serve as a reminder of the fact that I will never have the second child I desperately wanted.

Anyway… all this to say- I can relate. It is a bittersweet day for me as well.

5 JustHeather { 05.13.13 at 9:27 am }

Love the picture!

I don’t eat right upon waking, which is why I bring my breakfast to work with me and eat it there. I am finally sort of hungry about the time I leave the house ( an hour after waking) or as I get to work.

That’s the sort of mother’s day my mom always “wanted”. Nothing purchased, but rather a thought, good deed or something made. I would like to continue that now, but this year it didn’t happen. In fact, it was a very horrible first mother’s day.

6 Chickenpig { 05.13.13 at 9:31 am }

I love the head shot!
I am also not a ‘eat at first light’ person. But, I LOVE breakfast food. Which means that I enjoy going out for brunch. Coffee in bed is nice, though, with a book. I had to work yesterday, so I didn’t get anything in bed. Although one of my twins met me at the bathroom door with a nosegay of paper flowers and a card. I bought my mother a gift and went to see her and my sister and brother were there. It was so nice just to be there with my siblings enjoying my mother’s company while watching her grandchildren play on the lawn. Mother’s day does not make me think about infertility as much as other holidays do, oddly enough, because before I had children Mother’s day was about my grandma. Now Mother’s Day makes me sad because she is no longer here. In a way, celebrating her helped me navigate infertility.

7 Ann Z { 05.13.13 at 12:19 pm }

I can’t eat right after waking up, either. And after an hour or so, I can eat something, but only if it’s not sweet, otherwise my stomach completely revolts.

8 Cristy { 05.13.13 at 12:30 pm }

What in the world is going through that teacher’s mind?!?! Yes, I get there are people out there who chose to spell their children’s names in ways that aren’t immediately obvious, but when I see a trend from the parents AND it’s listed on the attendance sheet, I follow suit. Sounds like the woman has a screw loose. It’s really too bad that ChickieNob had to endure such a mind-twister because of her passive aggressiveness.

Sounds like otherwise (and outside of the 20 gallons of water) it was a good day. Glad you were able to spend it surrounded by those you love.

9 Ana { 05.13.13 at 12:37 pm }

Urgh, I can’t eat until a couple of hours after waking up, too. Coffee is fine first thing. Holidays in general I find complicated, what with the expectations and obligations and inevitable disappointments…Mother’s Day is no different.

10 Tiara { 05.13.13 at 12:47 pm }

What a proud moment to see your kids master a two wheeler!

There were so many Mother’s Day posts…Elena slept in so I had a chance to read many & had a good cry, so many touching ones.

11 a { 05.13.13 at 12:47 pm }

No one can spell my daughter’s name – when they see it, when they hear it – doesn’t matter. Oh well – she’ll get used to it, I suppose. She already is a master of impatient respelling. I’m sure that will only get worse as time goes by.

That sounds like a lovely Mother’s Day (aside from the name thing). Mine was rather mixed, but I expected that.

12 Alicia { 05.13.13 at 2:21 pm }

I totallly agree! Yesterday marked my first Mother’s Day. I had zero expectations, which made for an all-around pretty great day. J chose yesterday to have her first set of uncontrollable crying fits with all my family around, which was a down. Going for lunch with Bob and J was an up. Feeling sad for J’s birth mama mixed with happiness over her well wishes to me for a happy Mother’s Day. Mostly I was happy about not having to be sad and excluded, like in prior years. It really is a mixed bag kind of day.

13 Lori Lavender Luz { 05.13.13 at 4:21 pm }

I wouldn’t say that I can’t eat first thing in the morning but that I don’t. Unless my kids bring me leftover quiche in bed on Mothers Day.

Love the new pic, and now I can also imagine how it played out.

Isn’t it bittersweet when the kids can power themselves away from you? But as with you and your mom, they will always power themselves back TO you.


14 Aerotropolitan Comitissa { 05.13.13 at 8:19 pm }

Oh, see, there are kids other than mine who don’t lose their training wheels at four *man in the park*. I don’t know why that one sticks with me. Anyway, I have told pb, who insists he wants to keep them forever, that one day he will want me to take them off. I enjoyed your vision for me of that day. I can’t think of much else to comment on because it wasn’t a grand event around here, either, and mainly involved checking in with the older generations.

15 Geochick { 05.13.13 at 10:09 pm }

Great head shot! I also did not have a Mother’s Day post. I don’t know what to say about it, given my conflicted feelings.

16 Battynurse { 05.14.13 at 2:34 am }

Great picture.
I’ve had family members and people I’ve known for years that still can’t spell my name, or pronounce it. It used to make me mad but I don’t mind as much anymore.

17 lostintranslation { 05.14.13 at 7:08 am }

I didn’t have a mother’s day post either – I just don’t have anything with that day (probably inherited from my mother who didn’t like it and preferred not to celebrate it). Besides, here in France Mother’s Day will not be until May 26…

I saw a similar grin on my son’s face though this Sunday when he tried out a friend’s bike without training wheels. He was so proud (and so was I – and immediately made a mental note for the next Perfect Moment Monday).

Contrary to you, I need to eat when I wake up, otherwise I’ll faint… Luckily I also really like eating breakfast (and it’s one of the reasons we’re almost always running a little late for school/work/nanny because we love our family time at the breakfast table!)

18 Katie { 05.14.13 at 8:50 am }

I love that photo of you. 🙂

And you aren’t the only person who can’t eat first thing in the morning. I actually keep my breakfast at work so that I can eat it after I get to my desk and settle in. I’m never hungry when I wake up, and if I force myself to eat right away, I inevitably feel sick.

19 loribeth { 05.14.13 at 11:32 am }

Great photo! To answer your question, unlike you, I MUST have breakfast before I head out for the morning. I do not do well without food. 😉 On days when I have to fast for bloodwork at the dr, I make the appointment for as early in the morning as possible, & stop off en route to the office for something to eat (a muffin or bagel) & bottle of orange juice.

I had a teacher in Grade 6 who spelled my name Lorie all year long, even though everything I ever turned in had “Lori” written on it. :p

Voldemort Day (The Day Which Shall Not Be Named) is obviously hugely bittersweet for me. I agree that even if we love our moms, it’s nice to have a specific day to check in. (I use the same argument for Valentine’s Day, which dh argues is unnecessary since he tells me he loves me every day. 😉 ) But for women like me, it’s obviously a reminder of what we’ll never have. I don’t begudge people celebrating. I just wish they, like you, would recognize that it can be bittersweet or downright difficult for many people for many different reasons.

20 Alicia { 05.15.13 at 12:30 pm }

Oh, I forgot to mention – I love that picture of you! Nice to see your smiley face! 🙂

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