In the days leading up to Mothers Day, I wasn’t in a celebratory mood. It had been a particularly difficult mothering week in the house of Fiddle. Hanging my head in shame, I could not, for the life of me, understand why God had entrusted me with three children to mother. I don’t have to look far to see wonderful, incredible examples of mothering goodness. Women who bask in the glow of motherhood, and revel in the ups and downs of parenting.
For the better part of the week, I just wanted to curl up in the fetal position, and bark like a dog until someone saw fit to ply me with prescription medications. Just so I wouldn’t feel like such a loser. It didn’t work, everyone just stepped over me. The barking didn’t even phase them, they’ve been wanting a dog for some time now.
I went to bed Saturday night, not really looking forward to greeting Sunday morning. Mother’s Day. A funny thing happened. I woke up Sunday morning with tears on my pillow. Tears of relief from a dream that I had. I dreamed that I was homeschooling my three children. Which I think at times can be rather nightmarish. But my middle child, Cailey, who had been giving more-than-ordinary-grief all week, wasn’t mine. She belonged to a woman standing beside me, who had hired me to teach her. And as I stood there with this woman (who was much younger than me), I saw Cailey come running up to us, her strawberry hair flying behind her and bright blue eyes shining. She came to me and gave me a big hug, saying “I love you, Mommy.” And I thought to myself, “her mother isn’t going to like that.” And I panicked. Oh Lord, this woman could take Cailey from me, move away, and I would never see her again. And I hugged Cailey back, tightly, wanting to hang on to her and never let go.
And I woke up. Tears streaming from my eyes. Af first from grief, but then from the realization that Cailey is mine. And no one is going to take her from me. I believe that God sometimes uses dreams to show us things. He showed me perspective. And on that Mother’s Day morning, I looked at my role of mother with different eyes. And I was grateful for each of my three children. Who love me even when I fail. Who look to me to care for all of their needs. Who think I’m the greatest mom in the world.
Even when I’m not.
I can’t shake that dream. And the feelings it stirred in me. Even now as I write, I have a lump in my throat and am fighting tears.
I remembered a conversation that I had with Emme when I tucked her in bed Saturday night. She was asking me questions about Crystal, her little cousin who died in 2002 from cancer. She was only 11. Emme wanted to know if she would ever see Crystal again, and if her Aunt Cathy still cried. I had answered yes to both questions. Yes, she’ll see her Crystal in heaven, and yes, Aunt Cathy still missed her baby very much.
I cannot fathom what it’s like to lose a child. My grief over potentially losing one of mine, was immeasurable. And that was just a dream.
My Mother’s Day was not what I had expected. It was wonderful. As I hugged my children tightly, I thanked God for each one of them, and rejoiced in the knowledge that they are a gift from Him.
My most wonderful Mother’s Day gift was that dream. And the perspective that it left me with.
Originally published May, 2007
After a particularly busy week, I’ve been unable to write a post for The Busy Mom’s Club on this weeks devotional. And I don’t want to just hurriedly slap something together and throw it against the wall to see if it sticks. Not unlike most meals I’ve prepared this week.
So, on this day after Mothers Day, I looked back in my archives to see what I had written a year ago. I had forgotten all about this post. But, when I read it, the memory washed over me, like a drowning wave. All of the same emotions surfaced. Fear, relief, panic, and finally, a great sense of gratitude.
And, on those days, when I don’t feel like journaling the days experience, I’m awfully glad that I do. In the years to come, I’m going to look back on each post (well, some I will likely pretend never published) and I will remember where I was and what I was doing when my children were small.
Because, if it were not for my daily ramblings here, I would forget. And I never want to forget. Because some day, sooner than I imagine, these babies of mine will be all grown. And my empty arms will long to hold them in a tight embrace. One more day.
Happy Belated Mothers Day, all you blogging, and blog reading mommies!