I wanted to avoid this topic entirely but I’ve had too many conversations over the last three days to ignore it.
It must be said that I had a fabulous Mother’s Day, the best ever. We got up early, walked the Mother’s Day Classic with the kids and raised some $$$ for breast cancer, Yum Cha with the kids followed by early dinner at my sister’s house with my Mama who put no pressure whatsoever on any of us to catch up. The kids made it all about me, I made it all about my Mum and the Big Guy took care of the kids. Perfection.
However, between my girlfriends, the facebook groups I am part of and general chit chat at sports training I’ve heard way too many Mothers tell me they had a shit mothers day. I really don’t think that’s fair. The reasons range from kids ignoring the day entirely or fighting non stop, Dad’s who had to work or sat on the sofa all day and grandmother’s and grandmother’s in law making the day all about them.
Yeah, yeah, I know it’s a first world problem but here’s a secret people, we live in the first world so I shall continue my rant…….
As women, we generally don’t ask for much. We naturally take on the role of cook, cleaner, nurturer, problem solver, finder of all lost things, shopper, taxi driver, teeth brushing police, counsellor, psychiatrist, psychologist, judge and jury member, disciplinarian, teacher, sports coach, accountant, social secretary, motivational speaker and for many of us, professional full time career woman……
As wife and partner, we do a lot there too……think about it.
It’s ONE DAY IN THE YEAR and I have no doubt that if those fathers and partners or Grandmothers stopped to think for one minute how much a mother does for her family, a simple brekkie in bed, flowers or better still waking up to the cherubs being excited and saying “Happy Mother’s Day” would suffice. Mother’s don’t want bells and whistles but a day off cooking the meals or one day for HER to decide what the family will do would be really nice.
So next year here are a few tips for Dad’s and Grandmothers on how to get it right:
1. Buy her a little something. Gift giving doesn’t have to be expensive but a small gift and or card from your child’s father to say “Thank You, You are doing a great job” goes a very long way. Everyone likes to be complimented on the job they’re doing, this is especially important for stay at home Mum’s, they don’t get a performance review or feedback on their role, they just do it for no pay and rarely any feedback. Whilst you’re not the boss, think about how much of a kick you get from a colleague when they tell you that you’ve done a good job. Well it’s the same thing. TELL HER SHE’S WORTH IT AND DOING A GOOD JOB!
2. If you have to work on Mothers Day, prepare the kids the night before to make a big deal out of Mum. If they’re old enough, let them make her brekkie in bed. One of my girlfriends posted a brekkie tray with a piece of ham and a mandarin on it. I reckon that would have been the best mother’s day gift she’s ever received. Who cares what it is or what it looks like, it’s totally the thought that counts here.
3. Make sure you prepare the kids for good behaviour the night before. Take over the parenting duties FOR THE DAY. It’s only one day but far out, one day off in the life of a mother is the equivalent to a 2 week holiday in an over water bungalow in the Maldives. The good karma will come back to you, I promise.
4. It’s not a good idea to suggest to the kids that you ‘clean up the brekkie dishes or tidy your bedrooms for Mum’ and don’t just do this on Mothers Day – just because Mum’s the one who nags about it, or does it all the time, doesn’t mean it is her job. She’s just the only one who see’s it on other days ending in Y. Perhaps think about cleaning up ‘for the family’ because you all live there.
5. If you’re separated or divorced from the mother of your children, have respect. Especially if she’s doing a great job raising your kids. The greatest gift a father can give his children is showing them he respects their Mum. Play nice for the day.
5, Grandmothers. Oh you lovely things. We do love you, honestly we do but you’ve had your turn. Mother’s Day is of course about you as you’re a Mum but if your kids are grown up and have their own kids, lay off the pressure valve and let the Mum who is preparing school lunches, running around like a madwoman have the day she wants to have. All mother’s have their turn at Mother’s Day and it doesn’t take a genius to work out that the toughest years are when the kids are from 0-18. If you have sons, just remember that the daughters in law probably want to hang with their hubby and kids too and would probably like to ‘choose’ to go to your lunch/dinner/family function without being pressured or guilted into it.
That’s all from me this time, I needed to rant on behalf of my friends who just broke my heart when they said they had a rotten day.
To the Big Guy, my Mum, my sis, my parents in law and my kids – thank you. You made my day and you are all awesome.
HOW WAS YOUR MOTHER’S DAY? IF IT WAS A SHOCKER SHARE THIS POST WITH THE PEOPLE WHO NEED TO KNOW HOW TO GET IT RIGHT FOR NEXT YEAR!