I am not one that puts a crazy amount of pressure on Mother's Day.
I'm totally fine telling my family what I want and what I would like to do.
I typically like the day to be fairly simple.
Church, food, relax.
Last year (2014) quickly took over as my worst Mother's Day ever.
It beat out 2002 by a landslide.
A trip down memory lane...
In 2002, Matt and I (7 months pregnant) took Daisy (11 months) on the Afton Princess Mother's Day boat cruise down the St. Croix River.
My mom kept saying, "Leave Daisy with me! You guys go and have a good time!".
I said, "No...it's Mother's Day, I want Daisy to be with me!".
Famous last words.
Apparently a group of people were late in getting to the cruise, so they decided to wait, making the rest of the people that did show up on time, suffer. They departed 45 minutes late. Which meant that we ate 45 minutes late, and the cruise ended 45 minutes late.
For the average cruiser, this time delay wasn't a problem.
For us, there were some consequences.
Daisy had just learned how to run.
We had a hungry, tired, running 11 month old on that cruise for about an hour too long.
We nicknamed her "The Afton Princess" for the better part of that year.
Matt and I are not super relaxed in situations like that, so it was not the best day.
Last year was a totally different situation.
My three kids, on any given day, are normally so good to me.
Lucy will give me a manicure, Daisy will scratch my back, MJ will be thoughtful with his words.
Really good kids.
On Mother's Day, something happened where it was almost like they couldn't stand the fact that I had a day about me.
It was the strangest thing.
The morning started out just fine.
We got home from church, and I was preparing a soup (that Matt and I love), a salad, and some bread for a simple lunch.
My parents would be coming over shortly.
No one offered to help.
My Love Language is Acts of Service, which means I feel loved when my family members ask me,
"Is there anything I can do to help, Mom?"
Over the course of the next hour,
one child was flopping around on the floor asking why they couldn't see if friends could play. ("because all your friends are celebrating their mothers today, Sweetie"...was my sarcastic response...I hate it when I get sarcastic)
Two family members were sitting on the couch watching TV while holding an iProduct.
One child was nowhere to be found.
So, I was crabby.
My parents came over and we sat down to the lunch I prepared all by myself.
One precious child looked me in the eyes and said,
"I wish we could have just gone out to eat so that we wouldn't have to eat this soup".
I stared back at that precious child, got up, and left the room.
Matt found me upstairs curled up in a ball crying over the selfish children that I had raised.
Seriously, on any other day, they don't act like that!
My bedroom is above the kitchen and after my family enjoyed lunch without me,
my mom said to my kids, "let's clean up the kitchen".
Another one of my precious kids said, "I don't know how".
Oh...mark my words...my kids will never utter those words again!
I won't go into the rest of the gory details,
but let's just say, Matt and I had a meeting at about 7 o'clock that evening,
and our kids lives have not been the same since.
We attributed their ungrateful/entitled attitudes to:
1. too much media
2. not enough chores
Matt and I brainstormed ways to resolve those issues.
We came up with our Media Rules, which I go over once a month with the kids.
We also introduced a Chore Chart, which basically means that my kids will never again say that they don't know how to clean a kitchen, clean a bathroom, sweep, vacuum, dust, poop duty, take out the garbage, sort laundry, and help prepare meals.
The reason they won't be able to say that they don't know how to do these things is because they have done these things every day/week for an entire year.
And they will continue to do these things around the house as long as they would like to live in this house.
We definitely have more time on our hands because we homeschool.
But, I am still planning on Daisy completing her chores every day/week next year even though she'll be at high school every day. She may just have to do more of her chores on Saturday's.
I love my kids.
But I refuse to send an ungrateful, selfish, entitled kid out into this world (or into my basement).
There is work to do, there is time to manage, and there is fun to be had.
All things in moderation.
I hope you have an amazing Mother's Day!
I hope you feel loved and appreciated for all you do!
And, if you don't, it may just be the start of something awesome.
"Parents of tweens and teens need to hope for the best, prepare for the worst, and be proactive and effective in training our children to face the snares of adolescence."
Tough Guys and Drama Queens by Mark Gregston
Tough Guys and Drama Queens by Mark Gregston