Yesterday was my very first Mother’s Day.
I had been so looking forward to this celebration, yet I felt a low level sense of disappointment all day.
When Maisley was two months old, I remember thinking how much I would enjoy the sh** out of Mother’s Day this year. I remember in a breaking point, thinking, this is why mothers have a whole day dedicated to themselves (and Father’s too!). I felt like all of the thankless tasks that no one sees, the late nights and early mornings, the hard work, the constant worry; that it would somehow all be appreciated and valued in this one day.
That’s a lot for one day to live up to.
When I reflect back on yesterday, the bookends of the day taught me all that really matter.
[And sometimes as a mom, the bookends are my saving grace. A day of crying where nothing goes right, is righted with a sweet nighttime feed, prayers and Goodnight Gorilla.]
Maisley woke up at 6am and then after a quick snack, fell back to sleep on my chest, like she had done so many times in her early weeks of life. I watched her breathe up and down, her little lips slightly open, her sweet face peaceful and at home.
Later that night, my husband and I got into bed around 9pm (the usual). On my pillow was a letter that he wrote to Maisley, filled with generous amounts of praise and gratitude for me as her mom and his wife. He beautifully wrote:
“Being a mom isn’t the easiest thing. You’ll find that out one day. But your mom is a natural and was meant to be a mom. She has sacrificed so much over the last year; her professional work, sleep, her body, the list goes on. But she will be the first to tell you it’s all worth it, and then some! We take our moms for granted sometimes. It can be easier to do that than you think; especially since they are unwavering in their love and support. After a while, you can come to expect it. But I hope you always understand, Maisley, how much your mom has done, is doing and will forever do for you. It’s not because she has to or because it’s her responsibility. She does it because YOU changed her (our) life forever! You gave her the best gift she could ever ask for, and one she has waited her whole life for: to be a mom, to be YOUR mom!”
As I sat in our bed, sobbing, reading the letter over and over again, I was angry at myself for feeling even remotely disappointed. Because the satisfaction alone of her existing, and my husband for his constant love and support, is enough to make it all worth it. No one day was ever going to touch that.
I realized that Mother’s Day isn’t really about, “what are you doing for me”? But rather embracing a grateful heart to Maisley for making me her mom. I get to wake up and be her mom everyday; that really is the greatest gift.
Happy Mother’s Day, everyday Mamas.