celebrating mom

With the arrival of May, its now all about the mama's in our world as we look to celebrate Mother's Day! 

Over the years, I've had my share of Mother's Day failures...but,  if you were to ask my mom, she would say that she loved whatever it was that she received from my sisters and I. She's pretty easy going like that. As I reflect on some of my previous MDay decisions, I can't help but (lightheartedly) laugh at some of the things/ plans that I came up with. While well intended, I realize that I missed the mark with most of them. A great example: the year I bought  my mom and I matching spring dress pants and dragged her to the the place to be for Mother's Day brunch. It was noisy, busy and the food was only so, so... But, there we were in all our matching pants glory with me asking (confirming) "isn't this just awesome, mom?!" every 20 mins or so. You can bet if I had a photo of this  that it would be <insert here> in this post, but alas, I failed to capture that epic #Matchsies moment in a photo. But anyway, my point is that anyone who knows my mom knows that she's really not concerned with  (more like deterred by) the "it" places, if for no other reason than to avoid the chaos and fuss that surrounds the hype. And, for God's sake the woman can pick out her own damn pants. LOL! 

Some years, I would drag her to the spa or to a restaurant she hadn't heard of but that I raved about saying, "this place is all the rage" or "we have to try this place or I will just die".... (dramatic, I know). Other years, I'd buy her perfume, designer handbags, jewelry-- you name it. I planned activities, took her to places and bought her things that I thought she should want to experience or have.

Now don't get me wrong, these are wonderful gift ideas for moms! But,  all moms are different. Planning a brunch outing wearing matching pants might be exactly what someone else's mom would adore. And, like I said, my mom was always graciously accepting and pleased about her gifts and she enjoyed herself (moms generally love whatever they receive for the gesture that is behind it, especially on Mother's Day) but I was often left feeling like I hadn't reached her the way I had hoped/ set out to. My heart was in the right place but it wasn't connecting with the occasion, or her, the way I wanted it to. As I continue to grow and learn more about my mom (even though I've known her my whole life, I am #StillLearning!), I want to use what I've come to better understand and honor her, for her....To create experiences that are less aligned with the "Hallmark holiday"-ness of the day and more aligned with the simple pleasures that make her happy. So, this year I wanted to do things differently-- to do something for my mom that, although scaled back and simpler, is more authentically aligned to her and is something that I can really show up and be present for...a sincere gesture that makes a happy memory. 

Maybe for most, this concept is obvious... (I applaud you smarties out there if that's the case, lol ); but it wasn't always to me. This past year has been an interesting one in terms of changes and growth with the relationship between my mom and I; we've come to understand and embrace each another in a new way which has  allowed us to exist in each other's worlds in more of an authentic and accepting way than ever before. Through this evolution, I've learned more about her than I ever thought I could; it's been fun to be surprised by all the things I didn't know about her... to see her for the woman, the Being, that she is and not just as a mom... I've enjoyed learning her nuances, what she thinks, what irks her, what makes her happy... and, instead of focusing so much on how different we are, I've loved being able to identify and celebrate our likeness. I've begun to break down the walls of the box I (unconsciously) had her in for so long.

...my mom and I circa 1987, posing roadside on one of our many family camping road trips

This year, I've let her take the reigns of the day-I've made myself available to do whatever it is she'd like to do. She chose to have coffee together at the house, go for a quick lunch somewhere easy without a big Mother's Day fuss and to go shopping for plants and flowers for her summer garden...I know, right?!? A great little day. As for her gift (sorry to spoil it if you're reading, mom), it's something simple and inexpensive but something she's been enjoying indulging in as of late-- a selection of seasonal loose tea from David's Tea. She got the the nordic mug a few weeks ago and was really excited about it! 

...our similar joyful spirits united for a festive mom & me #Selfie (Christmas 2013)

Even though it isn't quite Mother's Day yet, this year already feels different; the simple gesture of asking her what she'd like and letting her guide the day already feels like I've hit the mark. I could here the appreciation in her voice when I said "I am going to come down that morning and be available to do whatever you'd like to do". I guess what they say is true, "less is more" and I'm delighted at the feeling that, this year, we are meeting one another on a different level; I'm showing up to meet her where she wants to be met and to honor the little things that make her happy. During our time together, I want to reflect and remind her of the moments that have mattered most to me over the years, which I haven't always been great at sharing with her but have always appreciated. I am looking forward to a lovely day with her!

...three generations... mom, me and my maternal grandma 

So, as we all prepare to celebrate our moms this weekend, I wanted to share the way I plan to celebrate mine. I'm sticking with my theme of this year and seek to #Create a "less is more", genuinely happy mother daughter memory that honors her and the growth she and I have experienced within our relationship over the past few years. 

To mom's everywhere, sending so much love and light your way. Here's to you and the job that you do; it's got to be one of the most challenging jobs a woman will ever take on, but where would the Soul's of the world be without you?!

Happy Mother's Day. 

With LoVe & Light, 

.cjd