Life gifted me with a precious child 39 years ago. I think until you experience parenting (whether human or fur baby) there is nothing you can even remotely compare it to and the amazing experience that it is. It impacts every aspect of your life. With Mother's Day here, I find myself as I have for many years, reflecting on having been a parent and thought I would share some of the Mother's Day memories and gifts my son shared with me.
When he was 15 months old I was newly separated and finding my way around the world of single parenting. My father was staying with us for the Mother's Day weekend so that he could visit my Grandmother. On Mother's Day morning he took Jeff for a walk in his stroller so that I could have a quiet morning coffee. When they returned Jeff was beaming! Held tightly in his little fist were a bunch of wildflowers that he and "G'mpa" had picked during their walk. The smile on his face was full of joy.
When he was 5 I was awoken by the milk, from a bowl of cheerios, as it was slopping across my face. My giggling smiling boy standing beside the bed, as he was bringing me breakfast in bed. Surprising as it was to wake up that way, no chance of my being mad at him. He was so proud of himself. We spent a morning in bed, cuddled under blankets together, eating cheerios and reading books.
'Family Night' was something that we started when he was about 2 and carried on even after he left home and was in University (we would have a family night on his visits home). It was an evening solely devoted to spending quality time together whether reading books, watching a movie, going for a walk... The phone was turned off, homework out of the way, no work was done, it was just time to share.
When he was six, we were leaving the garden shop when he asked me to stop the car and park again. I was firmly instructed to stay in the car as he went back into the store. After 5 minutes I was beginning to worry and was just on my way to retrieve him, when my son emerged, again with a smile. In his hands he carefully carried a viola plant wrapped with ribbon and pink foil. Happy Mother's Day he announces! Unknown to me he had brought his allowance to the store. Apparently the lady in the store helped him with the ribbon. He was so excited that he remembered and that I had stopped so he could shop.
Years passed with many breakfasts in bed and as he grew older the meals changed from cereal to toast, to yogurt, and then eggs. The first year he was away from home on Mother's Day, I mean really away (attending a year of university in South Africa), was really tough. But a few days after Mother's Day, (delayed by the postal service) came a beautiful card with a message from my son. And with it came a flood of memories of all the other years celebrated together.
My son has been one of my greatest teachers. I've learned so much from him in just watching him grow and explore his world. Now a man, he is the reason that I get to celebrate being a Mother (and a grandmother) and all of the gifts, life lessons and experiences that has brought (and continues to bring) into my life.
He has grown into a kind and thoughtful man and now I have the joy of watching him as a parent and the happiness, gifts and experiences he receives from that.
So on this Mother's Day I wish joyful blessings to all of those nurturing beings out there and the joy those they care for bring to their lives.