This Mother's Day was extremely special to me. I had the pleasure of attending a couple of wonderfully special teas and receiving many beautiful gifts carefully and proudly made with glitter, glue, pipecleaners and handprints.
As i was sitting in the school auditorium watching the second grade perform I just teared up and started crying.
Not because J was singing so pretty. She was.
Not because the songs were sappy enough to be on several Hallmark commercials. They were.
Not because my baby is all grown up. She is.
I just started crying because at that moment I became overwhelmed with how grateful i am to be a mother. The privilege is one I don't take lightly.
This was the first Mother's Day I found myself at with an empty belly and empty arms. I am not rocking, nursing or expecting.
I think this was part of the reason for the tears. I love the baby-baby stage so much. I half expected mothering to be a little more burdensome when it ended. It's not.
Actually, feeling this deeply without any hormone surges took me quite by surprise. Mothering just gets better. The moments of pleasure that come as the children get older are just as sweet and much deeper in a way. It's easy to love a baby. A baby that adores you and depends on you for everything. But loving a person with a strong personality and their own opinions like that easy to love baby is a wonderful feeling. Again, fun mothering.
So, this Mother's Day I am learning to say goodbye to the simpleness of purely meeting their needs and welcoming the challenge of learning their distinct personalities and loving their idiosyncrasies. I realize that even though I am no longer nursing their bodies and appetites, I am nursing their hearts and souls. Pouring into their character is a little more difficult for me but the greater the challenge the sweeter the reward.
Growing has been hard for me, sad. On Mother's Day I was suddenly overwhelmed with how great this whole ride is gonna be.
Along with my macaroni frames and pipecleaner flowers this Mother's Day I got a good dose of gratitude and perspective.