Posts tagged " mother’s day "

On not my Mother’s Day

May 14th, 2017 Posted by Tabula Rasa 1 comment

I’ve never been one for showering my mom with flowers on Mother’s Day, probably because she barely cares about Christmas, let alone Hallmark holidays. But ever since I son was born, my perspective has shifted. I feel entitled to a mother’s day. Probably more than once a year.

I imagine that all the moms reading this are sitting in a room with me and I ask you all, how many are feeling blessed, rested, happy, and fulfilled right now? Show of hands.

Then I ask you, who here is feeling exhausted, frustrated, who is trying to hold on to the few moments of this day that made it special just because if you don’t hold on to them, you will have a breakdown? How many forgot it’s Mother’s Day? How many have young kids who have no idea what it even is? And how many have non-Americanized and Hallmark-ized husbands who thought today was like any other Sunday and acted accordingly?

I’m guessing the show of hands would grow exponentially to the last four questions. Hashtag all you want, but unless you have caring teenagers in your house, we all know it’s not real. And it shouldn’t be.

We’re sold this nonsense of sleeping in, breakfasts in bed, family brunches, bouquets of flowers, mani pedis, massages, and what have you. And even if we don’t believe in any of this gibberish, the lack of it, or the failure of the perfect materialization of the image, affects us on this fake day. If my kid brought me breakfast in bed, I promise you, I’d end up having to do laundry two minutes later. Sleeping in? We all know that fairytale all too well.

But what if you’d woken up today without expectations? What if Mother’s Day was about actual mothers, as the name of the day suggests. As it was first envisioned by it’s founder, Anna Jarvis, who devoted her adult life to making it a national holiday in the United States. Her passion was fuelled by the loss of her mother at the age of 40, and she fought its almost immediate commercialization in the very turn of the 20th Century. She died alone, blind and childless. It was all for her deceased mom. No flowers, no eggs benedict, no hugs and pats on the back, maybe just a couple of mimosas.

I put my kid to bed, TGIM tomorrow flashes constantly in my mind, take a photo of the card he made me at school, to use with this post, his little handprints, in red paint, cover the two sides of a white heart. I pour a glass of wine, grab my laptop, and walk out onto the balcony. The sun is setting, and the sky is a rainbow, unlike any I have seen before; dark grey, light grey, dirty blue, bright pink, orange, burgundy, then blue. My camera refuses to capture its beauty, as if telling me that life isn’t meant to be shot and posted somewhere for everyone to see. It’s fluid, it’s ugly, it’s breathtaking, it’s unpredictable, uncontrollable, it takes us by surprise when we least expect it; as is motherhood, as are we, as are our mothers, and the mothers before them. We are not perfect rainbows in a bright blue sky.

Happy Sunday to all you blasts of color. Above all, to mine.

Next year, I’m renting a minivan and taking all my sister moms to a 10-hour, kids and dads-free lunch.

On Mother’s Day

May 7th, 2016 Posted by Tabula Rasa No Comment yet

When I was younger, the only “days” that mattered were birthdays and holidays; party days. But as I grow older, suddenly I look forward to Christmas morning more than New Year’s Eve, try to bring my girlfriends flowers on March 8th, and actually begin to care about what till now, was for me yet another Hallmark holiday; Mother’s Day. By no means am I suggesting that I’m going to get to sleep past 6.30 tomorrow, that anyone will bring me coffee and eggs on a tray in bed, where I will relax and sip on a mimosa until noon. That’s just a joke, kind of like Hallmark. Nor do I mean that my son is expected to make me “happy mother’s day” cards with hearts on it for the rest of his childhood or take me to lunch every year when he’s an adult. (Though I wouldn’t say no to either.)

What I mean is that as we grow older, we appreciate ourselves more, what we’ve accomplished, what we’ve learnt from endless mistakes, that no matter how much we think we are going to be better than our own mothers, grandmothers, fathers, we can only hope to do as well as they did. We learn to love ourselves as much as we love our kids, for only that way can we truly love them, accept them for who they are, and give them the space and warm, nurturing boundaries that will let them flourish into humans we will forever look at and smile.

Happy Mother’s Day to all parents, mothers, fathers, grandparents, guardians, for this day, and every day, is about all of us who possess the strength, the patience, and that bottomless well swirling with love. We are all far from perfect, far from who we think we must be, flawed, at times wrong, weak, selfish, failures, but at the end I hope we all win in this game, like my mother and grandmother are winning tonight, as I write this tearfully grinning into the screen.

I rarely post family pictures, but today I will. Four generations of everything that encompasses the meaning of human.

Pieces: a novel

“Pieces” is the winner of the silver medal at the 2017 Independent Publishers Awards (IPPY), and a finalist at the USA Best Book Awards and International Book Awards.

When Clouds Embrace: a children's book

All proceeds from the sales of "When Clouds Embrace" will go to Giving for Greece, a foundation that works to help the hundreds of unaccompanied refugee minors in Greece.