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My First Mother's Day

 

When I used to think about what it would be like to celebrate Mother’s Day as an actual mother, I had this storybook image in my head as to how it would all play out. My husband would cook a special breakfast for me, and he would buy a sweet little gift and write a card telling me it was from my precious baby. We would spend the day together as a family; perhaps go for a walk and get some ice cream. I did not, however, imagine that I would spend my first Mother’s Day alone!

To be fair, no one actually planned for me to be alone on Mother’s Day. It was purely accidental. Prior to me even becoming pregnant with our child, my husband planned a trip to Las Vegas with the guys. Plane tickets were purchased, hotel reservations secured. When our little bundle was born in February, neither one of us looked at the calendar to realize that his big trip fell over Mother’s Day. When we did realize it, I wasn’t upset. A little disappointed? Yes. Angry? No.

“That’s ok,” I told my husband, “I’ll celebrate with my mom.” In my mind I was thinking, This will be great. Not only can I celebrate the fact that I am a mom, but I can celebrate with the one person who inspires me to be the best mom I can be! Surprise, surprise, those plans came to a screeching halt. Just before Mother’s Day my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. The doctors moved quickly. Within two weeks of learning this devastating news, she had a double mastectomy. Chemotherapy treatments were quickly scheduled. Her first treatment would be the day after Mother’s Day. The only thing she wanted was to spend some time at her beach house before beginning what would certainly be the most miserable six months of her life. That meant she would not return until the evening on Mother’s Day. Although I was saddened that my mom was suffering, and wanted nothing more than to celebrate how amazing she is with her on Mother’s Day, I was not going to deny her what she wanted most, and that was to relax at the beach.

So, here I am. Mother’s Day—alone. The funny thing is, I’m not disappointed. It’s not about other people celebrating the fact that I am a mom. It’s about being a mom. I feel truly blessed to spend Mother’s Day with this amazing little person who made me a mom in he first place. The greatest gift I could receive on Mother’s Day isn’t a breakfast made by my husband, or some sort of present. It’s going into my son’s room when he wakes up in the morning and seeing him smiling up at me. It’s the fact that he knows my touch and scent better than anyone else’s, and that when he gets really upset about something I am the only person that can comfort him in an instant.

My amazing mom shared some wonderful words of wisdom with me shortly after our little boy was born. She said, “It’s not about you anymore, and it never will be. You’re a mom, and for the rest of your life it will be about your children.” She is right. Mother’s Day isn’t about me. It’s about this little being that finally completed me, and made me who I am today.

 

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