When you think of Mother’s Day, you don’t think of stress and anxiety, well at least you’re not supposed to have those feelings.
The concepts of closeness and unity should surround you as you feast at an awesome brunch that features mimosas, the omelette guy, and ice sculptures. You see smiling mothers and daughters in matching flower dresses and white hats hugging each other and hanging out by the fruit. Families shower mom with gifts at the table, and mom genuinely enjoys the effort.
This does not happen in my household.
I am consumed with anxiety on Mother’s Day. I don’t know if you’re aware, but the relationship with my mother is not exactly a Hallmark-American Greetings type of relationship. It’s different. Most chicks I know willingly hang out with their mothers and love every minute of it. They go on shopping sprees buying hers and hers matching outfits, or inclusive vacations where they clink their glasses together in a toast, or to the movies where they share each other’s popcorn.
We do not have this kind of relationship. We have stress and sassy Spanish words.
I have the kind of relationship where I’m stressed out about buying a gift because nothing I’ve ever gotten her was received with a smile, except that one time when I got Juan Gabriel tickets. But that dude doesn’t perform in the states every year. There is no it’s-the-thought-that-counts sentiment here. Instead I get the look. You know, the I-can’t-believe-this-is-my-gift look. So after stressing out trying to please her and being consumed with anxiety every year I made a change. I switched over to gift cards, but even then some of the stores did not share her interests. So now it’s just cash or a Visa gift card.
At first glance it may seem impersonal, but when I tried getting personal, it did not work out. Cash seems to be the norm now and I haven’t gotten any complaints. No radiating smiles, but no looks of disappointment either. Some where in the middle I guess. But the anxiety doesn’t go away as I must spend the entire day trying to do nice things for her, which she may or may not enjoy.
But what about me? What about The Guat?
I’m not celebrated much. The veteran Guats usually get top billing on this holiday: My mom, aunts, cousins, and sister. I’m in my mid thirties with two kids, but I’m still the “youngest” of The Guat clan. So the mom crown is worn by others. But I’m still celebrated by my kids. My son shares cards made of unevenly cut construction paper, crayons, and handprints. The baby just decides not to spit up on me.
But just when I thought the only recognition of motherhood would be courtesy of my kids, I received this awesome handmade card from a friend in the mail. Actual mail, not email. Regular envelope stuff that needs a stamp to get to you.
She took pictures from a recent pinata party of my smiling kids: my son mastering the art of hula hoops and the baby checking out her brother, all under the California sun. A real Martha Stewart effort. I loved it. So I thank my friend, who’s genuinely kind and awesome herself, for this cool Mother’s Day recognition. This was the Hallmark moment of the day – the ice sculpture without the melting part.