All right. I'm finally starting to be able to laugh about it. It took a few days for my disillusionment to turn to humour. You see, Mother's Day for me was not exactly what I expected.
It began at midnight. The very minute Mother's Day started. We were out of town at a wedding and were staying in a hotel room. This is never a good thing for the Lalondes. If the room doesn't have a sofa, we are in trouble. This one didn't. I slept with my daughter, Norm slept with the boy. Be darned if I wasn't reminded about every 15 minutes what it was like to be pregnant with her because that was the frequency with which she kicked me. All night. Then there was SNorman on the other side of me breathing in the curtains, which eventually woke up both kids. This stopped my daughter's incessant kicking, but it was quickly replaced with violent tossing and turning, and very loud sighing, along with a pillow whizzing past my face. The boy eventually moved to the floor, then the bathtub when he could take it no more. Believe me when I say Never. Again.
Once we all woke up for the day and got our arguing done about the previous night's events, we enjoyed a sunny few hours at the gift opening. It was great! We arrived back home in the late afternoon, and picked up some beautiful steaks for a barbecue. I sat on the deck and had a cappuccino in the sun. I could see all my neighbours' beautiful Mother's Day planters and hanging baskets displayed proudly in their front yards. Ahhhh, a day for us Moms. This was good, steaks went down on the bbq, it was smelling great and best of all, I would do absolutely nothing for the rest of the day! This was the point when the planetary alignment shifted ever so slightly and things started to go to "Hell in a Handbasket" as it were.
I was called inside and presented with a beautiful handmade card by my daughter. (Reminded that it was Mother's Day, she had fled downstairs as soon as we got home and threw some sentiments down.) Nonetheless, it was lovely. My husband was standing there with a shit-eating grin, holding a large gift bag that still had a tag on it that said, "Merry Christmas to Dad from Jordana." OK, welcome to gift giving in the Lalonde family... whatever. It obviously wasn't a beautiful hanging basket but I bet I knew what a bag that size held!! I've been asking for a new fruit bowl. I bet those kids of mine went to Pier One or a great pottery shop and picked me out something beautiful!
Well as it turns out, the bag did not in fact contain a new fruit bowl but a pair of real tree camouflage pyjamas from Cabella's (his new favourite store ever) and a bottle of scotch (I don't really drink, and I detest the smell of scotch). Silence ensued. Blink. Blink. I could think of not one thing to say. I recovered and laughed at the joke. Ha! Ha! Mother has a sense of humour! It was then that I realized it was not a joke, or at least the camo was not a joke. I became remarkably confused.
"It will be perfect for camping!", he says. Seriously? The man has known me for 22 years. I thought I made it clear somewhere in those 22 years that I would rather wear an outfit that Richard Simmons made popular in the '80s, than wear real tree camo. My children were equally as confused, as they had no real clue that it was Mother's Day and had let Dad take care of it. During my husband's repeated attempts to get me to "just try them on" no one noticed the flames leaping out from the barbecue in the back yard until the boy mentioned that 'something might be burning'.
Father runs out the back door and prevents the house from burning down, but not before the intense heat cracks one of the basement windows. We sat down to the charred remains of our meal and attempted to assess what had just happened. Words like, 'good intentions', and 'gifts are not important' were bandied about. The word Karma was brought up. The importance of really listening to one's partner was also discussed.
In hindsight, I'm still a bit confused but it's funny! It's worthy of a share. We do get caught up in the silliness of these special occasions, but one thing drives the point straight home. We just want our kids to be ok. If they are not, there is not a store in the world that contains a gift to ease that anxiety. If your children are healthy and happy, every day is Mother's Day.