Friday, May 8, 2015

Mother's Day

This morning I read this post. Please read it. I want to explain my headspace when I clicked on this link.

The other day I thought I was in labor. I had regular contractions and I was convinced enough to hop into the shower. (Pro Tip: shower before the hospital because you don't know when you will be able to bathe again.) Suddenly I was hit by a wall of exhaustion, so I decided to lie down. I figured if I fell asleep labor contractions would wake me up, but if not, I wasn't really in labor. I was not in labor. Of course this has put me in that desperate-to-have-baby phase of pregnancy.

Today I read a snarky thing about how priests "have permission to preach about the Gospel instead of mothers this Sunday." Now, I get it. Really, I do. There are a lot of women who are not mothers, some of whom would LOVE to be mothers, who hate mother's day sermons. I myself am not a huge fan if only because I find these lovely men paint motherhood with a soft glowing lens. Meanwhile, I'm usually in the pew, hot, being climbed upon, acting as a barrier between two children trying to sacrifice each other in an Old Testament kind of way. So, yes, I agree that sometimes the Mother's Day homilies can fall into a "more harm than good" feeling. I may or may not have fantasized about having a Mother's Day baby in order to escape this kind of personal discomfort. (Incidentally, I do love when priests talk about Mary and/or The Church as a mother. Everyone needs a good mom, and not everyone gets one. It's nice to be reminded that, actually, we all do get a Perfect Mother.)

I went downstairs after Scott had left with the kids, and I saw Molly's book report on the counter. My blood boiled as I went stomping around the house looking for my phone to call him. The book report was something I was so very proud to have her turn into her teacher. First of all, Molly loved the book I bought her and asked for the next in the series, which was a miracle of sorts. Secondly, her picture that she drew looked perfect. If only I could describe what it is to have Molly, of all the kids, draw something well. I cannot, except to say that I was almost considered worrying that her teacher would think that I drew the picture, it was so well done. (This is because her teacher doesn't know that I cannot draw very well.) At any rate, I was angry it was left behind after all Molly's cheerful hard work and cooperation, I was so upset that she just forgot about it as though it were nothing, as though we haven't had such a hard time with tension over school work. Here was our one collaboration in which we were both excited about her results!

Thankfully, God is perfect in His love and I read the above link. A mama who will only have a stone to visit rather than a child to cuddle. A mama who still deals with all her daughter left on earth, but has no cheek to stroke or hair to brush or book reports to make her exasperated. A mama who is not fretting about how to pay for tests for her child, but a marker for her grave. Oh, I have so much to learn from this life.

In retrospect I should have laughed at that book report. It should have tickled me and felt so perfect. After all, today is her birthday treat day at school. She sent me in search of overpriced cupcakes because Molly, who cannot eat cupcakes, appreciates the finer things in life and is always generous in sharing them with others. It is also Teacher Appreciation week and the kids decided to bring flowers, so she had a bouquet to give to a teacher that she adores with her whole heart. Why wouldn't she forget about her book report when she had so many good things to share with her class? Why wouldn't she forget about her own glorious work? She was being selfless, and I was seeing irresponsibility instead. Oh, I have so much to learn from these children!

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