Don’t Give Me Presents This Mother’s Day - Give Me Your Presence

I’ll take flowers, but skip the gifts this Mother’s Day

We’re rolling towards that tried and true holiday celebrating the glory of mothers everywhere.  

This Sunday, many of us will stuff ourselves into that one dress that we hope still fits postpartum (even if postpartum has been years) and schlep the entire brood to an overpriced Mother’s Day brunch at a country club, golf course, or TGI Fridays turned Hallmark moment filled with flowers, balloons, and crying children (ours of course). 

We’ll sip on mimosas and open cards that most obviously weren’t created by our children, but their preschool teachers.  We’ll smile and say thank you and overindulge in the sweets, the spread, and count the hours until we can go home, slip back into our pjs, and - if we’re still blessed with nappers - some much needed time on Netflix while our little ones recover from the festivities.

Exhausted yet? 

For even more of us, this holiday will shower us with cards, flowers, and a year’s addition to a charm bracelet, name tag necklace reminding us our kids belong to us, a watch, or something else shiny that was bought in a panic after viewing the lasted Jared commercial.  

I have a rule with my partner every year on Mother’s Day: no gifts. 

I love flowers, I love cards, and they’re great! I just don’t think they’re all that thoughtful. 

Let’s be honest, the end aisles of each grocery store and department store are chock full of flowers, gifts, reminders.  My husband would literally have to be blind to miss them.  I don’t want the REMEMBER MOM slogans to make him feel that remembering me this one day in May is a chore.  

I’d rather be remembered any other day of the year, acknowledged for the motherhood. 

Cause this shit is hard! 

Mother’s Day is hard because we make it hard; we take our families places we would never conceivably go any other day of the year.  We have extra hands to help and we have our womanhood highlighted. 

That’s not the day that I want the recognition. 

I want it when I’m sitting in a puddle of vomit in a house covered in laundry, dishes and Octonauts.  I want it when I remember (or rush out to remember) to get everyone the right brand of Gatorade for the baseball game, get the pants de-grass stained, remember to mail the HOA check, prep dinner.

I want the presence, not the presents

I want my family to stop and spend their time, not their money.  And I want it more than just on Mother’s Day. 

So often the un-glamorous parts of being a Mom go unnoticed.  They aren’t necessarily taken for granted, but they don’t get the recognition or attention that we need to give them.  Lack of attention doesn’t mean I’ll stop doing the things I need to do to keep the house from burning down or my kids from killing themselves with sugar and Disney, but occasionally not having to be the one to arrange the trip to the park is a bonus. 

I’ll take the flowers, and this year we’re skipping the brunch.  But the one thing I am looking forward to that will mean the MOST to me this year is my family being together, not preoccupied, but looking inward at what we have maintained, created, and hopefully strengthen our bond. 

I wish this for all of you on Mother’s Day