"All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother." - Abraham Lincoln
Mother’s Day. Don’t we sometimes feel a twinge of guilt that the cards and love notes and candies and flowers are great, but for 364 others days, we’re exhausted trying to be super moms and need to remember what it’s like to be able to sleep in, spend a lazy morning sipping coffee & reading a paper, or doing nothing at all.
Why is it so hard to say what you really want for Mother’s Day? As mothers, we can get so focused on taking care of everyone else in our families that we forget to let them know how to take care of us. And sometimes (as you may know from experience), your family’s well-meaning efforts might not fit exactly with what you had in mind.
What is it that moms really want for Mother’s Day? According to a recent poll, top gifts include sleeping in and being able to drink your coffee before it gets cold. Add to that a tantrum-free day, quality family time, and someone cooking for me and I’d call it pretty perfect myself.
Worst gifts include rubber gloves and aprons, any kind of cleaning products, badly fitting clothes or anything to do with diets. These really are worse than getting nothing at all!
To be fair, our families are not mind readers. They usually want to please us, but often don’t quite know how. This year, why not try a Mother’s Day by design? It’s your chance to call the shots without having to mediate between a chorus of conflicting desires and opinions.
Spend a little time thinking about what the perfect day might look and feel like for you. Of course include any beloved traditions your family might have, but also realize that it’s fine (and even encouraged!) to spend time doing something just for you.
This Mother's Day, put yourself first. Letting your family know how they can help you to do that is a win-win: You enjoy your day, and your spouse and kids know without a doubt that they did a great job.
As you plan out your Mom First-Mother’s Day, here are some things to consider:
Do you want to spend the whole day with your family? If the answer is “of course,” then tell your kids to clear their schedules now, and to leave their laptops and phones in their rooms. (Texting a friend while sitting in the same room as Mom doesn’t count as quality time.) But if, on the other hand, you’ve been waiting for permission to get away from the everyday chaos of raising a family, this is it!
Certainly you’ll want to spend some time with your kids and spouse, but you don’t have to be with them every second of Mother’s Day. Maybe you’d like to lock the bedroom door and take a nap, book a massage, get your nails done, or shop with your girlfriends, for instance. Do it - and don’t feel guilty!
What kind of celebration do you want? Some women might enjoy a loud, all-out party atmosphere complete with cake, games, and “Happy Mother’s Day” balloons. Others might prefer a low-key, quiet, and (relatively) stress-free day. And, of course, there are infinite possibilities in between.
I think families sometimes tend to gravitate toward making a big deal out of Mother’s Day celebrations because they want to make sure you feel special. If that’s not what you have envisioned, say so now! Your family won’t begrudge you a peaceful afternoon spent reading a book or planting colorful spring flowers if that’s what you prefer to do.
And one last thing: No rubber gloves!
Happy Mother’s Day, one and all!