Is there really an adequate way to thank moms for years of love and concern and all of the stress and worry we put them through? A bouquet of flowers and a card hardly seems like enough.
This isnít really a new realization for me. Having children puts everything in a different perspective, especially when youíre thinking about your own childhood and the people who put up with you for your entire life. We can fool ourselves into believing that we were perfect children, who were a joy for our parents to raise, but even the best-behaved children have their moments, and our parents had to deal with them.
In my motherís case, she had to deal with five children who were a little less than perfect, and although weíre now all fully grown, sheís still there for support in those rocky times. (And with five of us to see to, there are a lot of rocky times.)
Iím not sure anyone realizes what theyíre in for when they decide to have children. You may think about what it will be like to have a baby or even a toddler, but unless youíre gifted at planning things out, I doubt too many people imagine what life will be like when they have a teenager or when their child becomes an adult and heads out into the world.
The job of a parent doesnít end there. It may change, but it never really ends. Instead of cleaning up spilled sippy cups and handing out Band-Aids, you deal with the good and the bad choices people are sure to make and try to help heal broken hearts and hurt feelings. You may hope for the best, but youíre always around to pick up the pieces and help put things back together.
Maybe itís simply because I have a large family, but it seems like there is always someone in need. It could be an injury, an illness, the end of a relationship, a new baby, a family tragedy, whatever the reason Ė someone is always requiring attention, and somehow, despite their own busy lives, my parents are always able to provide it.
I can only hope that as my children grow up and head out into the world on their own, that I can provide the same support to them.
So, now itís Motherís Day, and I have the same problem I always have. How do you acknowledge all those years of support and strength? If there is a single gift that can show all of that, Iím not sure what it is.
So for now, Iíll simply say thank you. Not just to my mom, but to moms everywhere who continue to support and love their children in spite of their flaws and mistakes.