On Birthday and Mother’s Day Wishes…

First, let me take a minute to wish all my fellow okaasan a happy Mother’s Day.  I feel like this is acceptable.  Aside from the fact that mother’s day is essentially a Hallmark Holiday, some of you are overseas, many of you are still very new acquaintances, and none of you are my mother, thus an actual phone call may be impractical, and possibly even weird.  This may sound like a “Captain Obvious” kind of observation, but it segues nicely into my point.

Thursday was my birthday.  I got a lot of birthday love via Facebook.  My bestie took me and my family out to lunch.  My neighbor brought me fresh strawberries and a mojito.  I was frankly touched.  Even though we’ve become quite good pals lately, the fact that she thought of me even a little was pretty cool.  One of my other friends brought me a whole DQ ice cream cake on Friday (my waistline thanks you!)  I had a very lovely birthday, despite spending at least part of it in the pediatrician’s office with my daughter for a weirdly vacillating rash.

And I got a few birthday texts.  Which is cool…  Except that not a single one of my four sets of parents or three sisters actually picked up the phone to call me on my birthday.  Ironically, my Dad just called to say “Happy Mother’s Day.”  Maybe it’s easier to call on a Sunday than a Thursday?  My mom, for her part (and weirdly) wished me an early “happy birthday” when I spoke to her earlier in the week.  But why?  Was she planning on being in absentia on my actual b-day?  (Hubby seems to think she just wanted to be the very first to wish me a “happy birthday”.)

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Anyway, it’s not a huge deal, but I have to admit it’s given me pause, and once again made me consider how our ever increasing technology is changing our culture…and our manners.  Is it okay for close family to text or Facebook a birthday greeting in lieu of an actual call?  I have mixed feelings.

I wonder if everyone will mind that I have not, as of yet, made any of my Mother’s Day cards, let alone sent them.  Maybe I can just shoot my three mothers (mom, stepmom, and MIL) a text.

So, readers, just wondering your opinions on the changing times and tides of socially acceptable behavior and cultural traditions and holidays.  What are your experiences and feelings on the topics?

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BE The Mom; loving yourself

I’ve been thinking about this a lot in the past couple of days, and what better day to stop thinking and write it all down than Mother’s Day?

I have been pretty hard on myself, especially lately.  I’m sure there are a few reasons for that, but for this purpose I guess they are pretty irrelevant.  What is important is my stomach is too fat, my nose is too big.  I’m not pretty enough, I’m not a good enough mother.  I spend too much time on the computer.  I don’t keep the house clean enough.  I’m a naggy wife.  I’m not successful enough.  I screw things up.

And as I looked at my poochy belly the other day and once more thought to myself “that’s just disgusting,” I realized something important;

I love my daughter more than anything, and I want her to grow up loving herself and knowing she is special.  I would love her even if her nose was too big or she had a pudgy belly…and SHE loves me no matter what I look like (or clean like or what I screw up.) 

How can I expect her to love herself, though, when I am not setting that example for her by loving myself?  When she gets a little older and comes to me and says, “Mommy, I don’t like my nose,” or “Mommy, am I fat?” (and it may happen considering all the pressure put on girls and women to be beautiful,) how can I tell her she is beautiful no matter what when I don’t believe that for myself?

So, for her sake, if not for my own, I am going to make an effort to be kinder to myself, and see in me all the good that I see and want for her.

I love you, baby. You’re beautiful.

photo ©Cynthia Gemmill and alienredqueen