My first Mother's Day as an actual mother merits a blog post, I think.
Up until a little over two years ago, I really honestly believed I would never be a mom. I wasn't dating at all -- hadn't EVER really dated at all -- and couldn't see any good prospects on the horizon. It was fairly depressing. (It was also overly dramatic of me, but that's beside the point.) As long as I can remember, I've wanted to be a mom. As a child, I don't remember ever answering the "what do you want to be when you grow up?" question any other way. I wanted to be a mom. As I got older and my chances for having a family (I thought) got slimmer, I gradually came to accept that it was OK to be the fun aunt, and that I would be OK if I was single forever. And I still appreciated Mother's Day because it was a chance to celebrate my amazing mom. And I STILL love to celebrate my amazing mom -- but I'm thrilled to be a mother myself, now, too!
Here are some things I love about my mom:
*She gave birth to me via c-section when my older brothers were 5, 3, and 18 months, when her parents were on a mission in Zimbabwe and unable to come help, and she did not go insane. RESPECT.
*She always believed in me. She still thinks I should write a novel someday. It's totally not going to happen, but it's nice to have somebody who thinks your high school English class submissions were REALLY GOOD.
*She has an eye for beauty. My mom's a woman of many talents -- she quilts, she sews, she makes jewelry, arranges flowers, refinishes furniture, plans gorgeous weddings, decorates, and more -- and what they all have in common to me is that she creates things of beauty and gathers them around her.
Two examples: First, My wedding really should have been in a magazine. (This is a double-edged sword -- my wedding was a LOT OF WORK for my mom and my siblings, and I apologize to anybody who was up all night painting, cleaning, organizing and preparing for it. I went to bed early and had a marvelous day.) My dress (sewn by my mother, of course) was beautiful, the food was good to both eat and look at, the decorations were perfectly eye-catching and exuberant. I wanted a fun wedding and I GOT ONE.
Second, when I got home from my mission I went upstairs and found that my room had been perfectly redecorated. It had formerly been a room for a little boy (it was my brother's before I inherited it) and over the years had gotten pretty beat up. But it was my room, and I'd been away for a long time, and so I would've been happy to see the scuffed wallpaper and the little blue houses marching around the wall. Instead it was perfectly redone to be the room for a young woman (even though I'd only be at home for a short while before leaving again for college.) She'd stripped the wallpaper, painted the walls, found an awesome -- somehow both funky and delicately pretty -- small chandelier, redone the curtains, found a small bedroom set that fit snugly into the tiny space, and added all the little touches to make it just perfect. It was such a wonderful way to make me feel welcome and at home during those awkward weeks of adjustment home from the mission field.
*She sends amazing care packages -- and she didn't just send them when we were missionaries or college students. I STILL occasionally get a fun box o' stuff from my mom.
*She's so fun and inventive and patient with little kids -- important qualities as a mom that are now standing her in good stead as a grandma. I'm really looking forward to taking my kids on summer vacation's to grandma's house. They're going to love it.
Now, to keep this from being the longest blog post ever, I'll just reiterate that my mom is incredible and I love her.
Now, some things I love about BEING a mom, now that I am:
*I can enjoy the smell of freshly-bathed baby whenever I feel like bathing a baby. (The rest of the time I can enjoy the smell of baby plus slightly sour milk.)
*500 extra calories a day. I'm just sayin'. It's especially nice when I have a small cup of ice cream and sit down to nurse right after. It's the perfect calories in/calories out set up.
*Watching Dot with her daddy. It seriously melts my heart. It's so clear how much they love each other, and it makes me love both of them even more when I watch them play and laugh and cuddle.
*Chunky baby thighs. (And baby arms, and baby cheeks, and baby toes...)
*The sense of motherly accomplishment I feel when I happen to get more than three hours of sleep in a row, or when the doctor comments on how strong and alert she is, or when I recognize the signals and meet her need (food, sleep, game) BEFORE she starts crying for it, or when she's been crying but she calms down when I get her.
There's tons more that I love (and that I'll think about and savor tomorrow) but it's getting close to my bedtime. Here's what you all come here for:
I have the best. job. ever.