Monday, May 12, 2014

An Apology To All The Mama's Before Me

I didn't get it...

Today was my first Mother's Day.  It was absolutely lovely.  My little man decided that he was going to give me the best gift a 9 month old could give his mother on Mama's Day, and that was that he slept in.  He slept in til 9:30 and IT WAS GLORIOUS!  Thank You Benjamin!  Mama loves you so much for that.  That was incredible, but bringing him in to bed and lying there with him and my husband was even better.  We had nowhere to be and we were just snuggling as a family.  I couldn't have asked for a better start to my first Mother's Day.  Then, I got my first present.  My husband made me a book.  He colored and decorated a Mother's Day book for him and Benny to write in every year on Mama's Day.  It was so adorable I can't even stand it.  Yeah, I got some other presents too and they were nice.  He got me a cup I had been wanting and free reign on a bunch of clothes I had been wanting to order, but the book was the best part.  Love U Marcus Aurelius...  (I'll explain that nickname in another post at another time)

I'd imagine I am not the first mother to spend some serious thought on her first Mother's Day thinking about the whole concept of it.  You can't help it.  For me, there were 33 years of this day being about my mom and all the other mama's I knew, and then today all of a sudden I was included on this pedestal of goddesses that came before me.  It's truly an honor.  It's an honor that I don't think I ever understood until now.  You see, standing on this pedestal looking around me, I found myself looking into the loving, beautiful faces of so many women and I suddenly felt ashamed.  I felt so very, very humbled.

I try really, really hard not to be a judgemental person.  I do.  However, hard as I try, it happens sometimes.  I am not one to say these things out loud, they stay in my head, but they are still hurtful.  If not to anyone else, they are hurtful to me and my own soul.  It doesn't happen often, but happen it does. The reason I felt ashamed up on that pedestal was because I have judged these Mamas before.  I have judged them for things that I did not understand, and for that I am truly sorry.  So for today, on my first Mama's Day, I would like to write an apology letter to all the Mama's before me.  I am so sorry that I did not get it.

  • I apologize for all the times your kids were sick and you had to call off work, and I was angry about it.  This one goes out to so many of you, and I can't apologize enough.  Benny was sick, and I mean REALLY sick, for the very first time these last two weeks.  I get it.  Yes, it's true that someone else could have taken your kids to the doctor like I thought.  Yes, it's true that they could have stayed home with someone else.  Yes, it's true that it was probably just a cold and no big deal.  But I now understand that your heart and your mind would have been in pieces thinking about them all day if you had come in to work. I now understand that you stayed awake all night amidst terrifying anxiety over all the "What Ifs".  I now understand that there is some instinctual need inside our children that makes them want nothing more than their Mama's when they are sick, and that is not something to be ignored.  I am so sorry, and I want you to know that I get it.  Now, I get it. 

  • I apologize to the lady at (insert any public place) whose child was screaming uncontrollably, and I was angry.  I now understand that it is possible that this was your 34th attempt at picking up dinner to feed said child at the grocery store, and had nothing left at your house short of stale bread and water.  I now understand that is it possible that you just worked a 10 hour day and didn't want to have to take your child out to the mall to pick up the present for her friend's birthday party either, but you were trying to be a good mother.  I now understand that this might be the first time you have left the house in days, and screaming child or not this moment of seeing adults at the post office is reminding you that there is life after Barney.  I get it.  Now, I get it.

  • I apologize to every single one of my friends that didn't want to "go out" with me every weekend anymore because of something going on with their kids.  I am sorry that I rolled my eyes on the other end of the phone.  I am so ashamed that I never understood why it was such a big deal to get away.  I am even more ashamed that I truly thought the reason you didn't come was because it was too hard to get away, and I didn't realize the real reason.  If you had told me the real reason, I am even more ashamed to say I still wouldn't have understood it.  I now know the real reason was that you wanted to spend as little time away from your little loved ones as possible.  I understand how quickly the time we have with them when they are little goes by, and that every second of that time is worth more than anything on this earth.  Also, I want to thank you for the times you did slip away to be with me.  I now understand how much our friendship means to you if you would trade any of that time to be with me.  Granted, I probably throw up on you a lot less, so that is a big win for me.  I get it.  Now, I get it.  

  • I apologize to everyone that chose not to breastfeed, and I secretly didn't understand why.  It's freaking hard.  I mean REALLY FREAKING HARD, and I get it.  Now, I get it. 

  • Finally, I apologize to anyone that I have ever giggled at because they smelled like spit up, throw up, or God love it even poopy diapers, or to anyone that just looked like they smelled.  I went to Kroger last weekend to get some infant tylenol and I was a hot mess.  Not only did I look like a zombie, I literally had throw up all over my should and had no idea it was there.  My clothes did not match even a little, and I still had make-up on from the day before.  I don't think I need to say anything else here.  I get it.  Like, for real, I really, really get it.  

There is probably so much more that I will want to apologize for as my Mama days add up, but for now these are the top that come to mind.  You are all amazing women.  You are a strong, beautiful bunch of bad-ass ladies!  I hope you all can accept my apology.  I humbly ask for you forgiveness.  I do ask for one more thing from you though.  When you have that friend, that co-worker, or even that stranger that seems to get that look on their face when something is going on with your children that they don't understand, don't be hurt by it.   They will get it one day.  And, when they do, they will be so unbelievably happy to be ashamed and make this same apology like I am right now.  Like I said, I feel honored to be one of you.  I feel blessed to be standing on that pedestal today next to all that came before me.  I am ashamed, but I am smiling because there is no one that I would rather be today than Benjamin's Mama.  Ladies, I get it and I applaud you.  Happy Mother's Day Mamas.  


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-xoxo Jamie