Friday, May 13, 2011

Becoming a Steward: of Mother's Day

This past Sunday was Mother's Day.  It was a special one for me, because it was my first as a momma.  I woke up to a text from my Mom saying Happy Mother's Day.  We spent the morning with our church family and spent the afternoon having dinner at my Aunt's with my family.  My aunt and mom both bought me a card, and my mom gave me a gift card to Shoe Carnival.  My brother mailed me a card from Washington D.C.

Now I am not a big holiday person.  Usually it's just another day.  Don't get wrong, it is not that I am a cynic or a scrooge.  I like to think I celebrate life on the day to day.  I like doing special meals, trips, and gifts for "no reason."  I typically view greeting cards as an appalling waste of money.  I feel so guilty most times about receiving gifts and am known for returning presents to get gift cards so I can buy something more practical like grocery or items my family/house really needs.  I am almost always the person who replies "Have a good one." when the cashier wishes me a Happy/Merry *insert holiday.*

But Mother's Day this year was so....different. 

My heart melted when I read my mom's text.  I treasured the 3 greeting cards I received.  I ALWAYS throw away my cards (as immediate as I can without offending someone) and I have a good feeling I will treasure these cards for years to come.  You can bet your bottom dollar they will not be seeing the looks of a trash can for a looooong time.  The couple people at church who did nothing more than speak the words Happy Mother's Day to me, just made my whole day.  I kept hearing it over and over again in my head throughout the day....and even now as I write this.

I can't even imagine how many times growing up that I heard my mom say to me "You'll understand someday when you have children."  She said this statement in reference to an infinite amount of situations.  She was right.  I never really understood motherhood before I had a child.  And now I get it.  I get it, Mom.

And so I write this today for the benefit of not only all the beautiful mommas but also the many women, men and children who are not mothers.

This year more than ever before I was so eager and excited to see how each mom in my life was being celebrated.  I asked so many mommies how their children and husbands were making their day special.  I couldn't wait to hear from my mommy-to-be friends what their husbands had planned for them.  I couldn't wait to give my mom the card I bought her.  I just loved the celebrating, the sharing.  My friend Jodie (who has a toddler) told me she had cake and flowers that morning waiting for her from her little guy.  My aunt who has four daughters junior high through college ages, received an antique vanity from her hubby.  My mom got cards from me, my brother and my dad.  My husband called and talked to his mom (who lives out-of-state) for half an hour, and I sent her a simple text telling her Happy Mother's Day and that I love her.

And herein lies one of the beauties of Mother's Day.  I'm about to share with you the secret I never knew before this year.  The secret I probably wouldn't have believed before I was a mom.  On Mother's Day, more than at any other time, it is truly the thought that counts.  A mom thinks about everyone else (and everyone else) all the time.  It's her job.  Her all-wonderful, time-consuming, sleep-depriving, self-denying, deeply rewarding job.  She can't stop thinking about her children, she can't stop taking care of her husband, her house, her chores, her responsibilities, her family.  And on Mother's Day, we set aside a day to tell her we love her, to remind her how much she is noticed and appreciated, to spoil her, to pamper her, to take care of her!  We do this in many different ways.  To give your mother or your wife or your grandma or any other "mom" in your life an absolutely wonderful Mother's Day takes very little or no money, and doesn't really take a whole lot of time.  It just takes your thought, your heart.  The bottom line: it just takes you.

Jodie was glowing when she told me about her cake and flowers.  My aunt bragged about her hubby on facebook and about her vanity.  My mom still has her cards displayed in her living room.  My MIL told me how I couldn't understand how much my text meant to her.  My TEXT?!  My free text?  The one that took me less than a minute to type? Yup, that one.  And I would be willing to go out on a limb and say that if you asked Jodie, my aunt, my mom, or my MIL if they had a good and special Mother's Day, they would answer with a resounding y e s!

On the other side of the spectrum, a young lady about my age shared with me that her husband "forgot" Mother's Day.  She wasn't saying "forgot" in the sense that her husband didn't own a calendar, had his head under a rock for the previous week, and was deaf throughout the entire church service and had no idea it was Mother's Day.  She meant forgot in the sense that her husband just didn't think of her. As I recall she has two or three very small children, not old enough to know enough to take the initiative to do/make/say anything for her without the prompting and help from her hubby.  I heard about this shortly after church let out and told myself that her husband surely had some surprise....something planned for her and she just hadn't gotten it yet.  But I could tell from her words and tone of voice that this was a reoccurring event.  For that mom, Mother's Day wasn't a day of celebration and pampering and excitement.  It had become a day of heartbreak.  A day to be forgotten.

I'm not sure how you spent your Mother's Day, if you planned something great, were surprised with something wonderful, celebrated or were pampered, forgot or were forgotten.  But hear me when I say:  Mother's Day does not have to be limited to the second Sunday in May.  If your mom loved your flowers, your cake, your gift, your card, your call, your text, whatever it was...try it again!  Pick a day in June, one next week, in a few months, and celebrate a mom in your life.  Let her feel special and noticed and appreciated and spoiled for a day.  And if you blew it on Sunday....don't wait til next year to make up for it!!  You can help your mother, wife, grandma, sister, aunt, friend to know she is loved and appreciated by giving her very own Mother's Day....any day.

In the words of one of my favorite Christian speakers, Patsy Clairmont, "To be pampered & celebrated was such fun! Let's have Mother's Day again...say like Thursday?" 

I told you, I loved hearing the stories this year about how the moms in my life were celebrated.  So I'm dying to know....How was your Mother's Day? 


  1. Happy First Mother's Day, Jess!! I went to get Carolyn out of her crib on Mother's Day and saw the shadow of a little rectangle behind the window shade. I opened the shade and there was a card with the word "Mommy" written on it. My mom actually put the pen in Carolyn's hand and "helped" her write it. That little wobbly-written word brought huge crocodile tears to my eyes!! I will definitely be saving that envelope and card as long as I live!!

  2. Happy First Mother's Day to you too, Jackie!! Your mom is the sweetest :) Oh I know all about those tears. My face hurt so bad trying (unsuccessfully) to hold back tears when I got the card in the mail from my brother. It is very special. Something I will never forget.

  3. Happy belated first mother's day. You had a great role model in your mother. My mothers day was good except I was ill and didn't get to go to church. I received plants from Adam, Jill and the grandkids. Thanks for the link to follow you.