Sunday, May 11, 2014

In Which Not Everything Was Ruined

On Mother's Day, I wanted two things.
1. To sleep in.
2. An entire day of happy hearts.

It was more like this:
1. Dog wakes me up at 6 am and doesn't leave me alone until I let her outside and feed her.
2. Back to bed.
3. Daughter wakes me up at 7 am. She falls back asleep (in my bed!). I do not.
4. Son gets up at 8 am, just as I am sneaking my way out of bed in search of coffee (trapped between daughter, dog, and the husband who is still on the night shift schedule).
5. Son bursts into tears because the surprise he had planned is forever ruined by my presence. Son goes back into room to sulk.
6. I get my own coffee.
7. Daughter comes downstairs, cranky as heck, asks for a bagel. Not nicely.
8. Son comes downstairs, still sulking, tells sister she ruined the surprise by waking me up too early. And also, you're not supposed to demand breakfast on Mother's Day. At least not from Mom.
9. Daughter bursts into tears, highly offended by the accusation that she has ruined mom's special day.
10. Fighting, crying, and everything is apparently ruined.

But not everything was ruined. Not even close. Not even when you count the hour long nail polish mishap and dishonesty-induced drama with the girl that followed shortly afterward. Or that we missed church entirely. Or that the husband barely got any sleep before the 10 hour shift he was about to begin.

Not everything was ruined. For starters, my coffee was perfect. (If you want something done right....)
And the boy finally pulled off his surprise--at lunchtime, but still. The salad he made me was delicious. And no one yelled or screamed or demanded at lunch. So there was that.

But here's what I was thinking this afternoon as I held my daughter, pressing my nose into the strands of her hair, smelling the tears she'd collected on her cheeks. I was thinking that it's always going to be messy, and not just because the nail polish spills. I was thinking that there's never a day where you take a break from all the hard stuff, the misfiring of good intentions, the blocked goals, the cranky moods, the harsh words and rolled eyes, the disappointment. Sure, sometimes you get a day where it's a little less of that and little more of the sweet cards and surprise lunches. But usually, I mean almost always, it's really hard work to stay above the fray and to keep the kindness in your voice.

At one of our favorite Maine beaches, many moons and mother's days ago
If motherhood has taught me anything, it is this:
If there are people in your life that you love so much--so much that you'd rather be sleep-deprived and chronically frustrated and sometimes hurt and often annoyed and frequently worried and growing gray hairs at an alarming clip--if you'd rather deal with all that mess than to live without them, well, then you're a very lucky girl.

And I am. So very lucky.

Not everything was ruined. Not even close.