I realize I’m likely alone in this, but plopping Mother’s Day down in the middle of May was a pretty snarky thing to do. The reasoning probably has something to do with springtime and flowers (and the history of the holiday itself is fascinating and a little tragic), but for Pete’s sake, people.
May is end-of-everything season. Last sports games, championships, meets, and finals: wins and losses that mean so much because everything builds up to these final at-bats, goals, or laps. Along with these are usually some celebratory party or meal or picnic. All of the music, theater, and visual arts hold grand showcases as well: recitals, concerts, performances, exhibitions. Shows that mean so much because everything builds up to these presentations. Along with these are usually some celebratory party or meal or picnic. There are end-of-year activities at school: portfolios, awards, events, graduations, goodbyes, hellos, transitions, and countdowns. And along with these are usually some celebratory party or meal or picnic. There are field trips, special days, costumes, and field days. Heaven help you if your kid also has a birthday in May.
We had all of those, plus a few mild illnesses, my own medical procedures, and a college reunion I am forced to miss tonight because we have some sniffles in the house that are a little too much for me to comfortably push off on a sitter. I’m bummed.
Then there’s…life. You know, the playdates, the dentist appointments, the shoe shopping trip, the first few sunburns because it’s been 90 degrees so you took the kids to the pool, and then forgot to reapply their sunscreen after they were in the water, so you had to go get some aloe and you’re already behind on work. Or is that just me?
And in the middle of all of that, we pin a carnation to our not-as-perky-as-they-used-to-be bosoms, go have brunch, coo over the adorable handmade gifts that our kids’’ teachers had them do at school (THANK YOU, TEACHERS!), make sure the grandmothers and other mother figures in our life feel the love, and race off to a baseball game/swim meet/dance recital/ that was for some reason scheduled on Mother’s Day. And we don’t say anything (well, you don’t. I do) because we have to believe it’s enough and we’re goddamned tired and there’s a costume we need to sew (super glue) and a final school project that needs just a little more poster board than we still have in the house, so it’s out the door again and we might as well pick up a rotisserie chicken for dinner because we’re going to the store anyway because we’re out of milk because when the little ones tried to make you breakfast they spilled two gallons of the stuff all over the place. And the dog ran away (and eventually came back). Or is that just me?
And it’s like… this isn’t Mother’s Day; it’s Mother’s Few Minutes of Sitting Down and then Back to the Insanity Routine.
Maybe May is the most perfectly symbolic month for Mother’s Day after all.
- Ever the trendsetter, I began watching episodes of Mr. Show. Ah, HDavid Cross, why do you have to be so difficult in real life? It makes it harder for me to continue watching. And it’s such a brilliant show.
- I’m also watching the HBO version of Fahrenheit 451. I’m almost done with it, as I’m getting through it about 20 minutes at a time. Once the kids are asleep, I’m hard-pressed to keep my eyes open these days (see above commentary about May)
- Speaking of Fahrenheit 451, I got to watch my children’s concerts, and as always, they were precious and in rooms that could stand a little more air circulation.
- If you’re looking for a fun, engaging summer read, may I suggest How to Walk Away? Perfect for poolside, seaside, or inside.
Some interesting reads that I stumbled upon over the last month:
- This wonderful piece made me want to, burn my bra, take names, and blaze trails. Can’t wait to read the book!
- The rule in my house is, “Is it true? Is it necessary? Is it kind?” I think the world would be better if we were able to say even the harshest truths with compassion and dignity. Necessary words from Jake Tapper on being kind.
- I’m sure you’ve seen this one already. Brené Brown on midlife.
- I devoured this the day it came out, and am tickled pink that I’ve had no fewer than five people send me the text and/or the video of this speech. Howl on, friends.
- This addresses a pet peeve of mine. I think the notion of calling women “girls” is somewhat fraught and definitely seems to be more prevalent in certain areas of the country more than others.
And now we’re in my favorite time of year. I look forward to school ending and to really getting time with the kids. There aren’t many summers left where they will want to do too much with me, so I am wringing this one for all it’s got. I look forward to watching sunrises with my early-riser, sunsets with all three, and millions of wackadoo dives off the diving board.
And yelling at them “inside or outside! Pick one!” Which is truly the sound of summer.