Tuesday, May 15, 2012

On Mother's Day and Someday's Sun-Warmed Grapes

This Mother's Day brought with it a mixed bag of emotions. On the one hand, I cherish every new day I am a mother, even when I'm counting to five in my meanest mean voice because a certain someone refuses to put on her underpants in the morning. On the other hand, there's a big part of my heart that feels like my body has betrayed me one too many times. Prematurity... multiples and miscarriage... and now a potential Down Syndrome diagnosis looming on the horizon. Lately, I catch myself making lists of my pain. Past pain, pain in the present, and nebulous future pain, running through my mind like a mantra.

Sunday, the original plan was going to be a picnic at the sculpture park, in a repeat of last year and our attempt to start a tradition. But the more I thought about spending the day celebrating my role as a mother, the worse my wallowing got, and I didn't want to spend hours strolling the grounds with a strained smile on my face. In the end I admitted to the BabbyDaddy that what I really wanted to do was stay home and work on a recent ambitious to-do list I created for myself listing all of the things that, in an ideal world, I'd get done before family arrives in less than a week.

And that's what we did. I had freelance work I should have been doing, but after working hard the day before another three hours at the computer was a depressing prospect. I skipped church, afraid that the Mother's Day service would be one long lecture on how strong us mamas are. We didn't celebrate. We went to the hardware store to choose a nice plank of wood for one of my projects. We bought things like bags of river stones and mulch and four kinds of pepper plants. We dug seedlings into the damp soil of the garden and laid on the grass in the shade of the big tree and planted two grape vines in the hope that someday, years from now when this emotional period of our lives is just something we remember from time to time, we'll pluck and eat sun-warmed grapes right in our own backyard.

Mothers Day

I did, however, buy myself a present: Bloom by Kelle Hampton for my Kindle. I don't know what the future holds - and won't know that one little particular thing that my heart and head are both longing to find out for sure for about a month - but I wanted a glimpse into the world of someone who is living the reality that is, I'm ashamed to admit, currently the scariest inevitability I can think of.



  1. Don't be so hard on yourself! You are dealing with you feelings in the way that is best for you, and that is what's best for your family.

    You may or may not find this a little bit helpful. It's a blog I read everyday.

    1. Thank you for your encouraging words, Sandra, and for the link. I'm trying to get that glimpse, like I said, and every blog helps!

  2. I think you had the perfect day -- exactly what you needed and wanted. I'm glad you did!

    Another book (I read this years before I went through what we did, long before I wanted kids) is _Expecting Adam_. Very moving, very interesting -- and before Martha Beck jumped the shark.

    1. I'm glad you had a nice day, too :) And I'll definitely check out that book!

  3. the Hallmark holidays cause a great deal of stress, don't they? I like the way you did Mother's Day on your terms. very empowering!

  4. I am glad you didn't give in to the pressure of spending Mother's Day like others might expect is "perfect" As moms, as humans, sometimes we are in need of something different and not very traditional... I hope things get better for you... I'll be reading more of your blog... I love the way you write!



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