On Friday Design mom wrote that mothers day is often a difficult holiday for many women.

“I know that for a lot of people, Mother’s Day is the most emotionally fraught holiday of the year. Maybe they feel they’re not a good mother. Or maybe they have a strained or chaotic relationship with their own mother. Or maybe their mother died and they’re heartbroken. Or maybe they long to be a mother themselves. It can be a rough day!” ~ Gabrielle Blair

I remember years when it was difficult. I longed to be a mother. I cried when fertility treatments failed. I dreamed of days spent teaching the young minds of my own children about planting flower gardens and about days spent strolling museums. ( I was clueless about real motherhood~ more on that in a moment). I remember dreading when I had to stand at church and be handed a flower in recognition of mothers day. I felt awful standing – hoping no one else would pay attention to the fact that I had no posterity. No real reason to be standing there waiting to get the token flower. I really still wish they would just let the kids sing nice songs about their mothers and the speakers would share messages about motherhood and that the tradition of handing out flowers to honor moms would be abandon. I digress.

Today was the first awful mothers day in 8 years.

Boo was 6 months old for my first mothers day. I think that after 8 years of marriage and 8 unhappy mothers days I was so overjoyed to celebrate MY Mothers Day (finally) that nothing could have diminished my enthusiasm. Luckily for me, my husband, was also eager to take part in making the tradition of Mothers Day and creating wonderful memories. He used to do things like cook and make sure I got a Sunday nap. I usually got thoughtful gifts. I always got a card. I tuck them away in a special box, so that I always remember what a gift it is to be a mom.

A few times, I have celebrated mothers day with a much needed break from mothering. Although during those get-ways have regretted going away for the holiday. I much prefer to be at home , having my family alter their habits a little to make the day easier for me. It’s good for them! Is nice to be around them on these days, usually I love my husband more because he treats me extra nice on mothers day. Service is one of my love languages. And it’s one of the VERY few times a year that he cooks and spoils me a little. I often get breakfast in bed. Such a treat!

This year however, was a complete failure. The constant grey skies and pouring rain might have a lot to do with it. The fact that I didn’t get to church this morning might have a lot to do with it. Our busy weekend might have had a lot to do with it. My dismal outlook lately may have a lot to do with it. Difficulties in marriage has a lot to do with it. The argument last night with my husband over nothing obviously has a lot to do with it.

The day started okay. I slept in because I was up late driving us all home from a visit with friends, whilst everyone else slept. Dave got up with the kids, cut up some apples, cheese and put it on a plate with a yogurt and croissant. It was nice, not his usually effort, but at least something. The kids brought it in chiming Happy Mothers Day – kinda like you do at a surprise birthday party. Then they left the room, closed the door and mothers day was over. WARNING- STOP READING HERE IF YOU DON’T WANT TO HEAR ME VENT.

In contrast to other years, more elaborate breakfast in bed (garnished with fresh flowers and genuine loving notes of thanks) I could immediately read-between-the-lines. Throughout the weekend I speculated that there was no plan for a Mothers Day Celebration. I suspected that my husbands departure for a business trip on Mothers Day was a strategically planned escape. Paranoia? Hummm? I lingered in bed for some time, enjoying the peace and really hoping the commotion outside the door involved a clean up. Finally I emerged with my dishes only to find piles of more dishes in the sink and a lot of other disappointing evidence that this was not a day to look forward to. I said nothing. My husband promptly escaped for his trip, with a “I’m leaving” call down the hall. I spent the day feeling sorry for my self. I know it’s a waist of energy. I know that it’s the wrong response. I know that I sound like a whiner. But it is hard to experience diminishing returns. It’s hard to put so much effort into special occasions, celebrations, daily meals, etc. and see so little reciprocal effort made. My husband is being a jerk.

The kids aren’t to blame. I am sure they are normal. If they have flaws It is most certainly my fault. I openly recognize that I haven’t a clue how to parent. That the bad behavior they exhibit (often publicly) is a reflection of our lack of parenting stamina and know-how. Increasingly more common is my solution~ which is not to go anywhere in public with children (this solution suits them just fine). They are taken to the park and on walks to the mountains, and I try to avoid restaurants, and any indoor activities. In the last month it has made me increasingly more isolated and saddened about the consequence of parenting. I find myself wondering if the years of infertility were natures way of preventing a disaster. I am increasingly frustrated at how little I can accomplish in a day because I have no child care and no desire to leave the safety of my flat in the company of my children. I immediately dismiss the possibility of an outing like visiting a  museum alone, just me, and them. To think, this is what I dreamed motherhood would be like. And this must be what Ms. Blair was talking about when she said “most emotionally fraught holiday of the year”.

Why is it that parenting often only feels successful at the end of your children’s childhood?

Ann Romney did a mothers day video that I want to share- just to try and end on a positive note- click here.

She says “parenting is one of the most difficult things we will ever do in life, but also one of the most joyful- once the job is done. Ofter in the middle of it you wonder if you’ll ever survive”.

I guess that’s where I am – somewhere in the middle.

Don’t even know what to say about marriage. SO for a positive note click here. A blog about love is my favorite place to go when I am struggling with marraige. It helps give me some hope that love can prevail. It teaches me how to be happier in-spite of situations in life.

Tomorrow I will try and do better. I know my kids deserve it. I know that my greatest responsibility is to them. Happy Mothers Day, to those of you who have gone before me. Feel free to give me a glimmer of hope. Feel free to tell me that it gets better. Feel free to remind me that husbands eventually die (kidding- sort of). Please do not send me hate mail, yes I know my life is almost always fantastic and I AM grateful.

9 thoughts on “Mutterstag

  1. Oh friend, I’m so sorry :0( sending hugs your way. That hurts SO much. I wish I was your neighbor right now and could bring you some coffee and do your dishes for you ;0) btw I laughed out loud at your don’t take the children in public, statement…believe me I have the same theory OFTEN!

    • Of course I got my pitty party over with after I wrote this post. Today was much better. I started some furniture refinishing project, visited with a friend. Played a game with my kid. Practiced german flash cards with my other kid. Read some inspirational literature. Etc… THanks for reading, thanks for the pep talk! I wish you lived next door~just because!!!!

  2. My dear friend, while I had approximately the same mothers day as you, I am ever so grateful you came and spent the weekend with us. It was a bright moment for me in the last few weeks. It lifted my spirits to see you and have our children play together. We had such a great time. Please know that we love you. xoxo

    • Misery loves company, glad to hear that I am not the only woman on earth who is UNDERAPPRECIATED. We had the greatest time too! The kids are all sad to know you are moving to China but we all are excited for a trip to Thailand! Thanks for all the lute too! We ate black beans last night and Coco DRANK the rest of the chili sauce from the pot! She misses Mexican food the most. Love you all!

  3. We struggled with infertility for years and I too hated Mother’s Day because it was a reminder of everything I wasn’t (a bearer of children). Now, Mother’s Day usually bothers me because it reminds me of everything I’m not doing perfectly (just about everything). I wish that I was there and could venture out to play with you. I hope it will all get better soon. Hugs from another continent!

  4. Oh Im so sorry!!!! Don’t let your kids behavior keep you from going out! You are going to become depressed. Time for some lessons in etiquette/consequences for them so you can feel comfortable and do fun things! Dave needs a lesson too!!! Geez Im so sorry! It will get better. This is partly just a “getting used to new surroundings” phase. Xoxoxo

    • Yessss! Can you come be supper nanny?!?! As for Sparticus- you already know what I think about that! Yes, I know it’s all part of the phase… and believe me, I have experience with relocating! Becoming familar and at home takes time, it just happend so quickly when we moved to Charleston that I have forgotten how hard it can be other places! I really look forward to getting back to the happy, energetic, hard working, creative soul that I really am, instead of feeling like I am complaining all the time!

  5. My Mother’s Day wasn’t much to speak of, either. I kinda wish they’d do away with Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Grandparent’s Day…etc. You either honor and appreciate your parents and grandparents, or you don’t. Whatever. My kids are good kids, make good grades, help me out when I ask…I guess that’s all I really need. Hang in there! XO

  6. I know all of my comments are months behind and I thiught that perhaps i shouldn’t even bother, but I’ve enjoyed your post so much that I said what the heck…so here I go, months later when you probably no longer need a reply, but…Hollee, you are not alone. We all have hard days in motherhood and marriage! The good thing is that the hard days are not every day, and the good days are even better! Remember the opposition in all things? Well, that includes motherhood and marriage, and the bad days help us to appreciate the good ones! The trick is to never give up…and I know you won’t! Oh, and I think mothers often give more than we receive and the real gift is seeing them flourish as they grow…at least I tell myself that, I also try to remember all the hugs or words of thanks that I get throughout the year when some holiday hasn’t told them to do so and it makes up for the not so delightful Mother’s Days (for the most part) Hugs!

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