One year, not so awfully long ago, my brother, Jeafen, and I both forgot Mother's Day. We didn't send any gifts. No cards were mailed. There might have been a 9 p.m. phone call, but in all honesty I don't think there was. Mother's Day came and went, and we never acknowledged it.
Needless to say we had one very hurt, very upset, very angry mother...it was probably best that we both lived out of state, because I am pretty sure that if Mom could have gotten her hands on us we would not have lived to tell it.
I can promise you this, however, after that royal screw up neither of us have ever missed Mother's Day again. We call and remind each other. It's highlighted in my calendar. It is the second Sunday of May. Packages and cards are sent out by the Tuesday before. There are sticky notes in my house and an alarm on my phone to make sure that my memory does not fail me.
I don't think I understood the emotional importance of Mother's Day until Addison entered my life. She changed who I am. She redefined my priorities. She made my world a better and a scarier place.
Ninety-nine percent of my waking hours are consumed with Addison ~ changing diapers, reading, playing, having bottles, introducing new food, learning how to crawl, stand and move around. We go for walks. We stop and smell flowers. We touch tree bark and pick grass. We play at parks. She is learning what NO means. She recognizes her name. She can clap. She giggles.
Everyday she is growing, and learning, and amazing me more.
And, because of her, I now don't only get to honor my mom, and all the other amazing women who have influenced my life on Mother's Day, but I get to join their club.
I wouldn't dare say their ranks, because they have truly earned their stripes. As someday so will I.
I know one day I, too, will survive the first day of kindergarten, the first sleep over, the first broken bone, the first trip to the emergency room.
I will survive middle school, puberty, first dates and being told "I hate you!".
I will survive her driving a car, swearing, being hurt by a friend and having her heart broken.
I will survive when she goes away to college, even though I tell everyone I know that she'll never "go that far away" from me.
I will survive one day when she falls in love, gets married and starts a family of her own. I will survive when my opinion isn't always sought out or when she disagrees with what I have to say.
I will survive when, one May, she forgets Mother's Day...but she better live far away, or she won't live to tell about it.
Until I cross all those bridges, I am going to remember to savor the little things. I am going to put down the crossword puzzle and play on the floor. I am going to get off the computer and help her explore her world. I am going to remember that I will never have the pure innocent trust, love and wonder that I have with her now.
I will ask her to stop growing so damn fast.
I am going to remember that I am not doing this alone. I have a kind, generous and amazing husband. I have a strong, selfless and loving mother. I have a supportive and giving stepmother. I have a mother-in-law is who patient and silly. I have aunts and friends and a family that are compassionate and wonderful.
I have Addison Evelyn.
So Happy Mother's to all the wonderful mothers, caretakers, mentors and amazing women who love, nurture and raise children everyday.
Happy Mother's Day to the Grandmothers and Great Grandmothers who get to watch the magic unfold, but don't have to wake up for the 6 a.m. bottles.
And Happy Mother's Day to me....I am so lucky to be a part of this club.
Thank you, Addison, for sponsoring my membership.