Mother’s Day: the sweet and the salty

When you’re married to a pastor, as I am, Sundays and holidays that occur on Sundays end up being slightly altered.  For us, we don’t have typical weekends.  JJ is usually busy on Saturday, prepping for Sunday.  We hardly ever invite company over or go out on Saturday nights.  However, once Sunday afternoon arrives, our weekend begins.  While the rest of the world dreads Mondays, we welcome Mondays, because that’s our “weekend day.”  When a holiday happens on Sunday, we adjust as best we can, usually doing a Sunday celebration like the rest of the world, but making allowance for our (usually lower) energy level, since we’ve almost always had a service that morning and are rather tired out. 

For example, yesterday morning, before I had to leave to teach my music classes, JJ made me a lovely breakfast, making enough that I had leftovers for this morning (Sunday morning), so it was like he made my breakfast two mornings in a row!  It was very sweet.  To top it off, he even cooked supper on the grill last night.  I hardly had to cook at all yesterday, and any Mother’s Day weekend where I don’t have to cook is a good Mother’s Day weekend.

Today, besides being Pentecost and Mother’s Day, was Confirmation Day at our church.  Our family was invited to the home of one of the young people confirmed, a family with which we are very good friends.  Unfortunately, Baby J started acting a little sick yesterday, was awake and upset for much of the night last night, and today she has watery eyes, sneezing, a runny nose, and a low-grade fever.  So, despite my deep desire to celebrate this young person’s confirmation with their family (and enjoy the food at the party, thereby avoiding cooking practically the entire Mother’s Day weekend!), only JJ and Lyd are at the party, and I am home with my baby (who is resisting going to sleep, of course.  [insert eye roll here])

Yes, it sounds depressing, but I’m actually not that disappointed.  Well, yes, I am disappointed not to be at the party, but being home alone has its advantages, too.  The house is beautifully quiet (or, it will be soon once the baby falls asleep – she’s not crying, she’s just hanging out in her crib and softly talking to herself, so I’m sure she’ll fall asleep soon).  I managed to find a little something to put together for my lunch.  JJ brought home leftover confirmation cake from Coffee Hour, and it’s delicious!  The house is relatively clean, so I’m not staring at a huge mess, feeling guilty for not cleaning it up.  All in all, things could be a lot worse.  And did I mention the quietness?  It is REALLY nice.  🙂

All in all, things could be a lot worse.  I’ve had a sad story on my mind today, a story that I found on an online forum that I frequent.  One of the women who had been a longtime member of that forum was recently killed in a car accident.  You can read two stories about it here: http://www.legacy.com/roanoke/Obituaries.asp?Page=LifeStory&PersonID=108803800 and http://www.wsbtv.com/news/16186808/detail.html?rss=atl&psp=news   She was only a little older than myself, and she had two young sons, the oldest of which is my Lyd’s age.  I’ve been thinking about her story frequently, as I wonder how that family is celebrating their mother today – without her there.  Her little boy, old as he is at 4.5, probably will have only a few memories of his mother, and they will diminish as he grows up.  He younger boy will probably have none.  And then I think about my own girls, how much I love them, and I wonder what if …   Well, actually, I don’t even want to go there.  That IS a dismal thought.  But it certainly does make me want to be more patient and loving with my girls, and to truly enjoy each moment, even the up-all-night, endless-questions, don’t-want-to-go-to-bed-stalling, wake-up-in-the-middle-of-the-night-and-need-help-in-the-bathroom, sing-hymns-to-help-her-go-back-to-sleep, snuggle-with-the-baby-in-bed moments.  It’s all good, and it truly does go by so incredibly fast.

There’s a poem carved into a plaque that hangs above my baby’s crib.  The same plaque hung in my nursery when I was growing up.  It reads:

Oh, give me patience when wee hands Tug at me with their small demands.

Give me gentle and smiling eyes, and Keep my lips from hasty replies.

Let not weariness, confusion, or noise Obscure my vision of life’s fleeting joys.

So when in years to come, my house is still No bitter memories its rooms may fill.

That’s how I feel today.  I’m short on sleep, my baby is sick, I’m missing a party — but I’m still loving being a mother, in all its awful (and awe-full!) glory.  I’m doing my best to love every moment, and today I think I’m doing a pretty good job at it.  And, despite all the downsides, I wouldn’t trade it for the world.  It’s better than I ever could have imagined when I was growing up.

Meanwhile, Baby J is still having a hard time falling asleep and is starting to squawk rather loudly.  I think I’ll go snuggle with her in my bed and enjoy a lovely Mother’s Day nap with my daughter.

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