Yesterday was Mothers Day.
(Mothers' Day? Mother's Day? Well, you know.)
That day, the Sunday in May when we all stop and look at our moms for a minute and really let ourselves dwell on the magnitude of her love and sacrifice for us.
And then let her buy herself a present from us because we live on the other side of the country and last-minute long-distance shopping is a joke. No? Just me then.
I loved seeing all the pictures my friends posted of their moms - old pictures, new pictures, look-alike pictures, are-they-really-related pictures - it was gorgeous. And there were lots of tributes and celebrations and flowers sent and cakes eaten as kids of all ages said thanks for being Mom.
I received the best gift my toddlers could have given me: they slept two hours past their recent waking time ... yes, I got to sleep in for an extra blessed two hours. Our son came into our sun-soaked room at 8:30, rumply and adorable, wiping drool off his cheek and asking for breakfast.
We spent the morning at church, the afternoon with friends, and the evening resting. It was a glorious day. Strangers called "happy mothers day!" when they saw us playing with our kids at the park. Friends shared cards and encouraging notes. My kids said "happy birthday mommer" which was as close as they could get to whatever was going on. I got to chat with my gorgeous, graceful, loving mama.
But then came this morning. The sun was not shining, the kids were grumpy, and my husband was at work. Breakfast clearly wasn't as appealing as hitting siblings, and just when I was about to toss the kids into the backyard to play, a depressing drizzle started. I think I wrestled with three shrieking temper tantrums before 9am. (At that point, I figured God gave us rain boots for a reason, and we went out anyway.)
We had work done on our house today, so we couldn't find relief in a walk. We were stuck with each other, getting along or not. And it was usually not.
When naptime finally came, I snuggled down with my Bible to catch up on four days' worth of reading. And God told me about the person who should really be thankful on Mothers Day ... (yeah, you saw this coming)
It's me. Even when they're fighting, whining, being miserable ... I wouldn't trade these kids and this life for anything. Ever. You know what I get - not just Mothers Day, but every day?
I get to wake up every morning to babies who need me, love me, think my hugs and kisses heal every injury. I get to soothe them in the night when thunder bangs or they lose their favourite lovey. I get to hear them singing Jesus Loves Me, off-key and mumbley, while they play with trucks. I get to cheer them on when they try something new (or something old - because why not?). I get to celebrate their birthday anytime because they don't know what a year means and blowing out candles is one of their favourites. I get to grab their stinky toes and listen to their belly-laughs. I get kisses, at all times and in any state of cleanliness or nose-runny-ness. I get company in the bathroom. I get silly conversation while I shop. I get to make awesome breakfasts or because-i-said-so suppers and fill up those busy little energy-burning bodies. I get to plan surprises and see eyes light up with joy. I can make an entire day epic simply by opening a bottle of bubbles.
I get it all.
I get to be a mother.
I wanted to be, for so long.
And I couldn't.
But Sam's birth mother stretched her own generous heart open so wide, wide enough to give us Sam -
And Mothers Day is every day, because every day I am a mother. Every day, I walk in the midst of this life that is a gift, and it is so much more than I ever asked or thought. On glorious days, on mediocre days, on sunless dreary miserable days, I cannot look around me and see anything but gift. My kids? Mothers Day presents of the highest order.
I'm grateful. And grateful. And grateful. I've been receiving gifts since God started knitting me in my mother's womb.
Yes. Every day is Mothers Day. I'm grateful.