Being a woman sometimes stinks. Don't stop reading; bear with me here. Women are taught from the time they are born to be the strong ones. Women are supposed to bear the burdens of the world--and do so willingly and without complaint. Men are allowed to complain all they want, but women have to be strong. We have to be the glue that holds our husbands together, the glue that holds our children together, and the glue that holds our families together.
For the most part, learning to be strong for our families is good. We are the nurturers. We are there for the tender moments when our husband and children are hurt, and we can be the one who helps them through the trials in their lives. That can be an extremely rewarding experience.
On the flip side, the inner strength of a mother can become a burden. It may seem as if there isn't enough of Mom to go around. It may feel as if no one understands that Mom is hurting too. Who is there to buoy up Mom? Who is there when Mom is at her wits end or hurt? Oh, Moms don't get hurt, you say? No, Mom's feelings never get hurt. Mom is a rock. Mom has broad shoulders. You can say anything to Mom! Sometimes even Dad forgets that Mom has feelings.
I really hate Mother's Day. It's wrong on so many levels. I used to tell my kids, "If you love me, clean your room and don't fight today." Occasionally, they would clean their rooms for Mother's Day, but the fighting didn't stop until they left home. Correction: I didn't have to listen to them fight anymore after they left home. So the one day of the year that mothers are to be "honored," we spend trying to graciously accept trinkets and tokens of "love" in between sorting out who did what to whom.
Kids: Take a look at your lives and realize that whether you like it or not, what you are is because your parents never gave up. Then look at your own kids and realize that all the nasty things you've thought (and said) about your parents will rest on your own children's lips in just a few short years about you. There's no need to send me a card, or flowers, or a gift. Just stiffle your thoughts the next time you think your mother has done something evil--like maybe given you the advice you asked for, but didn't really want to hear. In 20 years, feel free to steal this post and give it to your kids. It will take that long before you understand.
It's taken years for me to get through Mother's Day without wanting to curl up in the fetal position and stay in bed all day. Maybe that's because I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. While I still have one at home, all my kids are now adults. The last one will be gone when the economy stops tanking. This Mother's Day, maybe I can actually smile--and mean it. I do love my kids; I just hate Mother's Day.