Mother’s Day: Ode to my young Mothers

I’m praying it’s 6 a.m.  But, we all know, it’s at least a few minutes before.

I hear the door. Not another second goes by and two tiny little lips squished between two soft and pudgy cheeks are in my face saying “Mommy?”

Then come the giggles.

Then comes the stuffed animal tossed onto my bed. One little foot climbs up. One little leg climbs over.

“Did you go potty?” I whisper, with eyes still closed.

“No,” says the 4 year old. “No,” repeats the 2 year old.

Let’s go downstairs, I tell them. Daddy promised to get up because it’s Mother’s Day. But I’m up anyway and I’ll go put on the coffee.

My counter is cluttered with hand drawn crayon portraits of Paw Patrol and stick figures riding what’s supposed to be horses. I just push it aside as my little ones climb onto the stools and I pour cereal and milk … no wait … cut up strawberries and melon … no wait, peel a banana … but get another one because I peeled the wrong end and now there are tears.

At least we are up early enough that maybe I can run to the grocery store before we have to get ready for brunch. That way, I can pick up the Mother’s Day card I didn’t get around to getting for my mother or mother in law during the hectic week, and then food prep for the next stretch of hectic.

Did I wash what I’m going to wear to brunch?

Did I wash what they are going to wear to brunch?

Did I send that email for work before I left Friday?? Eeeek. I have to prepare for that Monday morning meeting.

My mind is running through the mental to-do list so fast that I didn’t even hear “Mom! Mom! **sobs** MOM!”

“What??”

“She took the baby doll I was playing with and it’s my doll and she didn’t ask and then she pulled my hair….*sobs*”

At least 5 minutes in “time out” keeps them in one spot.

For us – young mothers in this phase – Mother’s Day is not what card companies and commercials set it up to be.

Pampering means we literally change tiny pampers. Time to ourselves still only happens during naps or maybe for a short hour. Cuts will bleed and Daddy won’t have the same touch, so the tears only stop if Mom covers up the boo-boo. The gifts are only as extravagant as Crayola can create.

We still have to manage up. We have our own Mothers who put in the decades of work and have graduated from macaroni necklaces. They smile when they greet us later, because they know they didn’t have to shower with an open door policy and sipped their coffee hot this morning.

But….

At some point between rushing out the door and running back in to get the forgotten blankie or stuffed bear, I remind myself: This is the most precious time I’ll ever have as a Mother. 

Their little heads won’t always seek my shoulder when they are tired.

Backseat babbles about what they did at pre-school will turn to silence and they won’t immediately tell me when a friend hurt their feelings. I won’t be the one they confide in.

Too soon, they’ll figure out I’m flawed and not the super hero they’ve grown to know.

Their little hands won’t take my face and pull it close to rub noses.

So, this Mother’s Day, maybe a spa day isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Maybe we should appreciate the fact that we are the sun, the moon and stars to these little sticky humans. And when we hear, “Mommy…mommy….MOMMY….” rush over because our glory days are now.

Realize that relaxing days will come. And we’ll envy the frazzled mom running in for the fastest pedicure money can buy.

So, to all my young Mamas … Happy Mother’s Day!! This is how we earn our stripes (or macaroni necklaces).

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