Sunday, May 10, 2015

A Simply Charmed Mother's Day

Today is Mother's Day. Some moms say they want time alone, a spa day, a fancy meal prepared by someone else or otherwise to be pampered. I like all those things too but I feel so spoiled in my life as it is, that those things are not what I really want on Mother's Day. Not that I am pampered with regular spa visits (truthfully I never do the spa thing) or that someone else makes our meals on a routine basis unless you count the nice people at Moe's and Chipotle (and I do count them), but our meals are rarely fancy. I have a pretty regular life but I feel very charmed in its normalcy.

And as far as alone time, I get plenty. My husband works a lot and my kids are in school and activities that keep everyone busy. I work a few part-time gigs which keep me busy too.  In between, my jobs and volunteering, when everyone else is occupied, I have lots of time running errands, cleaning the house, keeping their lives running, most of which I do alone.  When the boys were young, that was not the case. I do remember the days of wanting time alone, even for five minutes. And I remember the desperation of needing that time. Well, that time finally came. So don't send me away on my own for Mother's Day.

What I really want each Mother's Day is time with my family. I don't even care really what we do as long as I get to be in the same space with my husband and my boys, laughing and talking and sharing an experience. Not time spent preparing for the next activity, not time spent discussing school projects, not time revisiting house rules of internet use and screen time, not time spent planning the boys' lives one permission slip at a time. Just time spent. Time now. This moment with my family.

I woke up to flowers, cards, empty water glasses from last night and the other usual random stuff on the kitchen table. I loved it all.

We have no real plans for rest of the day and it suits me fine. We will likely do what we typically do on a Sunday: relax, work a little around the house and yard, hang out on the porch with the boys, play with the dog, go out somewhere simple for dinner that we all enjoy. A day charmed by the ordinary.

I think those are the Mother's Days my own mother likes best. The only thing better would be if my mom could be here to spend it with me.

I made my mom a special gift this year. Actually, the gift was to both my parents, a handcrafted reminder of the family they created.

The trunk is my parents. My brothers and I are the branches. The dark green leaves are my husband and my brothers' wives. The light green leaves are the "grand" generation, my children and my nieces and a new addition of my nephew-in-law who joined our clan this year.

Our family tree has room to grow. It is weathered by time and seasons. It has branches and leaves that will never experience more growth. But those bare branches are just as significant as the promise of new growth. Our family tree is at once ordinary and unique. What could more simple and beautifully complex than a tree?

Truth be told, I have one of these for myself too. Several versions were scrapped before the final looked just right so I have one of the earlier versions for my own, a handcrafted reminder of the family that made me. I love it all.

Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers in my life!