Mother’s Day is fast approaching, and you know what that means. That means that thousands of moms are taking to their blogs or Facebooks and writing posts or sharing articles that go a little something like this. Husband- here are things not to get me “X, Y, and Z.” And here is a list of things that I want, “A, B, C, D,…” Moms everywhere are filling out a child-like Christmas “Wish List” or “Gift Guide” for their husbands. And they try justify it any way they can.
I am not going to lie. I have been that mom before. The one who says don’t get me jewelry. I just want a clean house and a date night. Or I want a massage and some cute clothes. Or don’t get me flowers, I want you to do the laundry. Because, honestly, those things really would be awesome.
But here lately, these posts have just gotten under my skin. And here is why.
Why do we expect gifts? Gifts do not equal recognition. Gifts do not define us as mothers, or make us more or less worthy. Mother’s Day should be a day when we recognize our mothers. When we thank them for, well, pretty much everything. When we show them gratitude, when we honor them, and celebrate them, gift or not.
Today, I read one and all I could think to myself was “Man, I really hope that my daughter in-laws are not as self-absorbed and demanding as you.” Now, I do hope that my sons put thought into their gifts, but I really hope that my future daughter in-laws don’t deem gifts from my sons as unworthy, if that gift didn’t come off their Pinterest board. I hope they appreciate any act of love, no matter how big or how small.
My husband kind of stinks at gift giving. But that is OK. His gift giving on Mother’s Day does not define me as a mother. I’m thankful when he writes me a random note, or gives me chocolate, or jewelry. I’m thankful when he gives me gifts that I don’t really want. Because, to him, that gift was probably special, and it means he was thinking of me.
I really wish that when people would write these posts that they would take into consideration that there are single moms, who don’t have husbands to buy those gifts, or do those acts of love. I wish that they would consider the moms who have lost babies, or families that have lost mothers. That they would consider the women who would give anything to be a mom, and that they would think about their own moms and spending time with their kid’s grandmothers.
I have been a Mother for 8 years. My first year was spent in the hospital, but the following 7 have been spent alternating between my mom’s house, and my husband’s mom’s house. Having a fellowship meal after worshipping God together. I haven’t had one Mother’s Day to myself, and I am beyond grateful for that. We get to celebrate with the mom who raised me to be me, and with the mom who raised my husband to be such an awesome man.
I realize that the gift suggestions are harmless. But in the midst of all these suggestions, let’s not forget to show some gratitude.
And really, want to know what I think the best gift anyone could give on Mother’s Day is?
Time spent with your kids, time spent with your own mom, time spent with your husband, and your family. Because really, in the big picture, those are the things that matter. And those moments and memories are irreplaceable treasures that you can never get back.
Happy Mother’s Day everyone!
*Here are some ideas on how to spend time together- take up a family project (we redid an entire flowerbed last year), go on a hike, sleep on the trampoline, have a movie marathon and eat lots of junk food, visit grandparents, let your kids make homemade gifts. Those moments will be the things you remember, much more than any diaper-duty free day, or an unlimited shopping spree. Make memories. And be grateful.