Sunday, May 09, 2010

Mother's Day

Extract from To My Mother
Because I feel that, in the Heavens above,
The angels, whispering to one another,
Can find, among their burning terms of love,
None so devotional as that of 'Mother,'
Therefore by that dear name I long have called you...

-Edgar Allen Poe

I believe that Mother's Day should be celebrated even before the unborn child makes his debut. The work, pain, suffering, joy, compassion, and care of a mother begins well before the birthday of the expected child.

I also believe that Day only gets better with each passing year. My first official Mother's Day was not filled with warmth, an outpouring of gratitude, or breakfast in bed. I recall wanting the day to quickly pass by. I had been a mother for about three weeks. I was exhausted, frustrated, and sad. I remember Sophie not sleeping well the previous night. Because most mother's spend the first month or so awake when they should be sleeping the smallest things upset you and thinking rationally doesn't come easy. I remember screaming and crying because Sophie wouldn't go back to sleep after nursing. I think we both felt miserable. The cards I received from family and friends brought me to tears because I didn't feel worthy of the praise. But now I realize that's just all part of the process and part of what makes us mothers so damn tough.

Last year I received my first Mother's Day card from Sophie and I still look at it from time to time-written in a hybrid of her and her father's handwriting. Sweet, gentle, loving. And this year I have matured even more in my motherhood. Sure, not every day is full of roses, sunshine and puppies but the good out number the bad and I have learned, somewhat, how to ignore the tantrums and I'm learning to roll with the punches.

But now because Sophie can speak and walk and understand, there is no doubt she loves me. I love her soft kisses on my cheek and the hugs around my knees. Her affection and needing me is enough of a gift. Maybe I should have realized that when she was but three weeks old she wasn't trying to deprive me of sleep but give me a gift...her needing me and wanting me close.

I can only imagine with more years and hopefully more children Mother's Day continues to evolve and be a day I will always look forward to.

Happy Mother's Day!

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