Mother’s Day Matters

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.




Sleep + Springtime

I miss her when she sleeps. 

Almost every night before I close my eyes, I lay under the covers with my iPhone in night mode and scroll through the thousands of images and videos of my happy girl. The trips we’ve taken, the simple moments at home, family love fests, her first this and that, smiles with dada.

The sleep deprived “me” of two months ago is rolling her eyes like I’m that mom.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m elated that she’s finally sleeping through the night. I did an invisible front-flip-back-handspring when I woke up after seven hours of uninterrupted snoozing.

I just feel this little tug of “something’s missing” whenever I’m not next to her. Will I feel this way forever? Is that why moms are so sad when their children go off to college? Now I’m really sad, why did I just go there?

In other news, spring is in the air and my excitement to travel and explore is in overdrive.

As soon as March hits, like clockwork, I suddenly and impulsively find myself booking trips. Almost like an addiction, I get this high knowing I’ll rekindle with my vacation-self soon.

Traveling with Maisley is different, but also has a new level of enjoyment (like most things in motherhood).  She got her wings at three months old on a trip to Seattle. I fed her on the way up and down, otherwise she slept most of the time.

I think our upcoming trips to Portland and San Francisco will be easier and harder in different ways. Easier because she’s more of a human at 8 months, and harder because I literally don’t think she fits into her “nimble nook” Pack ‘n Play anymore.

Regardless of the challenges, I’m actively committed to soaking up every minute with Maisley.

Because in a few fast months, the images from these trips will too become part of the memory montage on my dimmed iPhone screen.

P.S. I thought sleeping through the night would significantly help with my mental clarity throughout the day. However, yesterday, when I was trying to pay our gas bill online, my credit card wouldn’t work. I tried four times and then called my husband in frustration. Turns out I was inputting our zip code from 2012.

Maybe mom brain is permanent and the lack of sleep was just a good excuse.

Ideas & Daydreams

I felt a breeze of Australia today. I was putting Maisley in her car seat and out of nowhere this rush of air came through me like a whisper on a whim.

The sun, a smell, the air.

It was transporting and invigorating. It filled up my wanderlust tank in a split second. It was Australia, in Carlsbad. I felt it.

Australia is my daydreamer’s paradise. The place she goes while sitting in traffic or on a walk with Maisley. Specific spots all around the city come flooding into her: Watson’s bay, the coastal walk, Lord Nelson’s Brewery.

Sometimes I think those rush of beautiful memories are more divine than just a daydream.  As if they come straight from the Mother Nature and God collective. Those two creators sit amongst the stars, gleefully sending us beautiful signs of wonder right in front of us, and wonder we once knew.

I asked my beautifully creative photographer friend how ideas come to her. Are they abstract? Concrete? Do they come in color, words, images?

She told me that she writes in her morning pages every single day. While most of it is just stream of consciousness, she finds gems of ideas hidden in the words. She allows herself time to daydream so that she can create and experiment with original ideas, not just those she sees on Pinterest or Instagram. And she travels. Whoa does she travel.

She then returned the question.

An idea or thought typically comes into my mind either from something someone said, or a little pop from another train of thought. It floats around the chatter of my mind for a few days.

From the front, to the back, to the front again. It persists. Sometimes it bothers me.

A few other ideas begin circulating.

Then, without warning, a bigger idea comes into the flow. I call this thought, “the closer”. It comes in hot. It’s an idea that somehow makes the other ideas fit into a story or narrative. Then I write without hesitation. With freedom and ferocity.

Whatever the source, I’m just happy to get a breath of my soul place and a visit from creativity every now and again.