I woke up on Mother's Day with a bad attitude.
I just had a bad attitude. Just because. I don't really, actually know why. Well I do, but it was like a million little mundane things that were making me crazed. Nothing of real substance. And I just about chewed Stevie's head off before I even rose from the bed, and as soon as the flurry of emotional words escaped my lips, I wished I could scoop them out of the air and cup them back into my mouth, swallowing their poisonous power.
But I couldn't.
That's the thing about words - they are absolutely forever. I have learned to bite my tongue over the years, holding back my venom when it won't serve a positive purpose (because really, when does venom serve a positive purpose??) Sometimes I fall short, though, and resort to my childhood, childish ways. I have quite a knack for hurting with my words. I'm good at it. And I hate that I'm good at it.
Stevie and I reconciled, dealt with the reasons why I was feeling frustrated about, you know, everything, but my outburst had me thinking the rest of the day about my immature behavior.
Happy Mother's Day to me. Womp womp.
Being a mom has illuminated so many truths. But this thing of attitude affecting action - it's something that I watch my son emulate every day. My words are so powerful in his little life. And based on what I say, and therefore do, is exactly what that little guy will say and do. For example, when he burps, he says, "Excuse you!", because he's heard me say it to him so often. He doesn't say, "Excuse me", he says "excuse you". Because that's what he heard me say. It's kind of funny, but it's also really interesting. My words remain with him - the big and the very small.
Being Everett's mom (and Stevie's wife!) has taught me so much about the flaws in my character, the places where I am below measure in grace, patience, and selflessness. But days like Mother's Day really puts it in perspective for me - it raises the questions. What am I building in my family? What kind of mother do I want to be remembered as? One with a sharp, critical tongue? Or one with a calm, generous, listening heart. ( <-- that one.) One who doesn't jump to conclusions. One who loves loves loves and then loves some more. And then even more.
And then MORE.
My little boy is getting unbelievably big. He is smothered by my love, but I wonder what else he is soaking up by spending time with me. Those little behaviors that I don't realize I say or do, that he is keenly aware of and emulating day by day. Because even though he looks like a little Stevie Mini-Me (I know, I know), he actually talks and acts a lot like me. I hope that I'm doing a good job with him, helping mold him into the best version of himself. (This isn't a self-deprecating thing, I know he is learning positive things from me.) But what I mean is the little things, the ones that could slip through the cracks in case I catch them and fix them. I hope that next Mother's Day, I can say with some confidence that I've grown up a little bit and learned to keep my cool and extend my heart a bit more kindly. To all the boys in my life. It's such an honor to be Everett's mom. I am the luckiest.
I hope your Mother's Day was restful and fun and full of love and celebration. Ours was wonderful (after my wrong side of the bed wake up call), and we spent time lounging around my parents pool and eating take out. No clean up! Thanks to my sis Rachel for taking pictures. Much love to all of you :)
P.S. - My thoughts about my glorious mom last year on Mother's Day and the year before, too.