Friday, May 11, 2012

Dear Mothering


Dear Mothering,

You have been at the top of my 'skills' list on my non-existent resume for nine years now.  In fact, there is very little else I know how to do, since all I've done in the past decade was to be a stay-at-home mom.  With Mother's Day so close to my birthday each year, however, I always feel like I'm double dipping in May.  Two consecutive weekends of celebration always makes me feel a little bit guilty.  But thinking back over this past year, I decided to tell myself that I deserve every little bit of recognition as a mom, even if it just so happens to be close to my birthday, neither of which was in my control anyway.  So here are my Top Ten reasons why my mothering skills ought to be celebrated.

10.  Last November, I received a call from Dear Son's school nurse telling me that he fell, was okay, but seemed a little quiet.  I said I would come pick him up.  Not knowing that we would end up in the ER for the next five hours (for a rapidly progressing concussion), I walked out of the door, but just on a whim, decided to go back and pick up DS' lovey, Bluey Bear.  That was probably my smartest move as a mother for the past entire year.  It was what made our ER visit--as scary as it was--just that little bit less scary for DS.  #motherlyinstinctsavestheday

9.  There are certain things that only mommies do, at least in my house.  Adding to all the Mommy Magic (boo-boo-kissing and feel-good-hugging) items on the list, I am the only one that trims the kiddos' fingernails and toenails, and I am the only person who personally pulls out loose teeth.  For the precision, timeliness, and efficiency these jobs require, only I--and no one else (ahem)--am capable of completing them.  #itakeallthecredithere

8.  Having been the Chair of our PTO Healthy Snack Program at DS' preschool this school year, I have gone to the market and bought fresh fruits or vegetables for all the students of the school, once a week, for every week the school has been in session on Thursdays.  Along with the Healthy Snack AM and PM Team of parent volunteers, we prepare the foods (wash, cut, and portion) for the children.  I have transported more fruits and vegetables in my car this school year than the weight of a baby elephant.  #imakathesnacklady

7.  By allowing DS to come over to our bed should he wake up at night, I suffer from bed-battle-wounds.  A foot in my stomach or a slap on my face is almost a guaranteed occurrence.  Dear Husband gets fewer injuries because, let's just say, DS has a keen sense of smell even when he's asleep.  #mygiftforsmellingnice

6. I really should score big Parenting Points for the conversation that I have been concocting in my head--the one I have to have with Dear Daughter--probably sooner than later, and all the hours I have spent on articulating this particular chat that I know DH will be as far away from as possible. #wishmeluck

5.  Now come the easy reasons: in the last year, the numbers of hours I spend cleaning this place I call home: scrubbing the toilets, vacuuming the carpet, mopping the floors, dusting all surfaces, and running loads of laundry (but not folding--I ain't Superwoman)...  The number comes to 936,000.  Granted, that's in seconds.  But that's the time my life is dedicated to that stuff I do, only to have to do it over and over and over and over again.  #andagain

4.  Since we're still on that topic, the next logical reason is the number of dishes I wash, with or without the help of my dishwasher (usually without, unless we have company): a gabazillion plus one.  #neverendingtask

3.  Next, the number of times I have had to hand wash poop-stained underwear in a day THREE TIMES IN A ROW because Miss Stingy doesn't want to throw away beyond-gross underwear.  #shehasissues

2.  With the proper amount of water, sunlight, and air, I grow an abundance of patience that always get used up no matter how much is put away for rainy days.  #avirtuethatisneverenough

1.  And finally, my proudest self-imposed restriction as a mommy: that I purposefully own the fewest number of knickers as a way to ensure that everyone in my family always has clean knickers to wear.  I'm the only one who ever runs of out clean underwear.  #ohthesacrifices

Believe you me, these reasons are not meant to boast my mothering skills.  Every mother in this world has her own set of skills to raise her children.  Every mother is worthy of endless celebrations of being a caretaker not limited to only once a year.  Every mother is a giving soul that knows of no self more important than her children or family.  This, in essence, is just my cheat sheet so that I can enjoy my Mother's Day brunch without feeling like I don't really deserve the attention.  Because in our giving role, it is often easy to forget that it's okay for us to receive, too.

So, Mothering, I am proud to have you as a set of skills that continues to make me a better person, a more dedicated caretaker, and a very deserving Mom.  I will keep my cheat sheet in mind while I celebrate the one day of the year that makes me special because of my day-to-day job.  You really are my proudest accomplishment in the last nine years, even if it's only on that non-existent resume.

Happy Mother's Day to all Moms!

Sincerely,
Me

21 comments:

  1. yay! as usual, after typing in a longish response, Wordpress decided I should sign in. Needless to say, I lost my comment. I will have to come back alter. :-)

    ~Imelda

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    1. Imelda, I'm so sorry! Do you mean Blogger wanted you to sign in? I have settings on ANYONE can comment! I will take a look again. Thanks for the 'lost' comment... I appreciate you coming by!

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    2. No, Wordpress signed me out, then blogger did not want to accept my comment without it. When I hit the return button, the previous comment was gone. boo hoo.

      By the way, How do I subscribe to the Comment and replies. I think I am losing much of your reply becasue I do not know how to subscribe. :-) :-D

      ~Imelda

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    3. Imelda, after you write in the comment box, press 'publish'. After the screen refreshes, you will see a yellow highlighted sentence that says 'You comment has been published' or something like that. Then on the lower right of the comment box, there is 'Subscribe by email' --> click on it. Then you should receive all subsequent comments and my reply, and I would definitely reply to all your comments!! I'm sorry you all are having such a hard time commenting these days. Hope this helps!

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    4. Thanks, Sandra. I will keep this procedure in mind. :-)

      ~Imelda

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  2. What she said.... lol
    well, you are a great mother and thanks for making me feel like one!
    I think i'm not wonderful but i will say one thing. For the most part, usually, when my kids turn around and expect to have someone there, it's me.... i am there. The times i am not there, i certainly worry and attempt in some small way to make this world a better place. What woman in her right mind looks at pictures of her kids at night after they have kicked her butt all day? Yes that would be me. All three of us are bruised, battered, and exhausted after a long day (2 boys) but we make it through each day. A million hugs and kisses and tantrums and books and time outs and walks and PTO running and post meal clean ups and sleepless nights later, it's worth it :)

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    1. My dear Helen, you are so right: it's all worth it. You know why you look at pictures of your children at night? Because they are asleep and are not terrorizing you! Just kidding. But I love watching them sleep. I've told DH that I love them more when they're asleep than when they're awake. To be fair, that's usually when I've had a really hard day with them. You are such a giving mom and friend; Happy Mother's Day!

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    2. Yesterday was one of those days that I really needed them asleep and Jack fell asleep before I got him to bed. It was the Mommy Gods giving me a break plus he woke up with a dry diaper...double bonus :) Yes re-reading a post, ya caught me!

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    3. I LOVE that you re-read! You're so awesome. Mommy Gods gave you a break that night, but got you back two nights later ! He was JUST NOT TIRED, was he?

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  3. Yay!
    This post is so full of Happy, and I love how you listed and gave each a final hashtag...
    Your ARE an amazing woman, those kiddos are Lucky to have You, and once again, I am super glad we've met.

    If we don't "talk" over the weekend, Happy Mother's Day!
    ps..I am pretty sure it was those banana muffins of yours that did me in...*tee hee*

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  4. Comment take two: this comment is not going to be nearly as fabulous as the one I just tried to leave, but as soon as I hit "publish" it gives me a '503 error", but I just wanted to letya know I was here, that I love this, that you are an awesome, certainly Rockin' Mother, and that it was those damn banana muffins of yours that finally did me in...
    Happy Mother's Day, my sweet, invisiblish friend!

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    1. Kim, you are not the only one having trouble with posting comments! I got the 503 error replying to all these comments. But they did post, so I got both of your comments to this post. I pressed 'back' and then it tells me comment was published.

      Anyhoo, thanks so much! My silly Top Ten posts all have the hashtags, which are just my attempts at making my readers crack a smile (some work better than other). I'm so glad we met, too, on so many levels. (I look forward to seeing your Instagram pics everyday!) We'll have another tea when I bake next. Happy Mother's Day to my ROCK STAR mom friend!!

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    2. Ooops. OTHERS. 'Some work better than others'.

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  5. Happy Mother's Day, Sandra! This is an incredible list of mothering skills, I think my favorite is #5. Or #1. I love the hashtags at the end of each as well--very clever.
    Hope you had a great day!

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    1. Thank you so much, Rachel! If I remember correctly, you have a little one as well? If so, Happy Mother's Day to you, too! You are too kind. Like I said, every mom has her own list individualized for her family. Thanks for your compliments!

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  6. Sandra, another wonderfully written piece! Love #3 and #4. Happy Mother's Day and Happy Belated Birthday!

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    1. Thank you, Tran! I hope you had a wonderful Mother's Day, too! I love it when people tell me which Top Ten are their favorites; it shows how we relate to each other =) (I've been meaning to ask you if you know how to subscribe comments by email so you can read my replies, but I keep forgetting).

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  7. Oh, you so deserve the attention. I hope you got it this Mother's Day! You do at least two things I can't do - pulling teeth and cleanning dirty undies. Hubby pulls teeth and I borrowed money from the grocery budget to replace tossed undies!

    P.S. The comment subsription issue was Wordpress and me...long story. I put the option back in and I think it's working now :)

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    1. Yes, I had a wonderful Mother's Day. Bonus: DD wrote the loveliest poem for me.

      It's nice that your DH shares some of these duties. Although, to be fair, my DH does practically everything else there is to do with kids. We all have our limits! (Thanks for the info on Wordpress subscription; I thought it was I who messed it up!)

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  8. Aww, this is such a sweet post! I love it - and your reasons. Kudos to you for all the you do, and never, ever feel guilty about being celebrated. You deserve it! I refuse to think about those 936,000 seconds, but thanks for putting that out there ;)

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    1. That's kind of an estimate, but I can't be off by that much! =) I wrote 'knickers' again. Just for you. Did you giggle? =)

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