I can’t do it.


I know that I should be writing about Mother’s Day, but I can’t do it.

My whole blog was started for my personal therapy as I moved from my Mommy days to my Empty Nest days.  I write about every aspect of Mothering, from its first tender moments to the sadness of letting go.  Mother’s Day should be a feast of topics for me.  It should be filled with ideas and feelings.  My words should be tumbling out, one after the other, as I strive to capture the meaning of the day.

But I can’t do it.

I have had ideas floating wistfully through my head for the past week, but I can’t seem to catch one and hold it in place.

I thought that I would write about what it means to be a mother, what it truly means in the life of a woman.  But I couldn’t decide how to start. Is it about that first moment when we feel life stirring so deep inside us, and we realize that we no longer live just for ourselves?  Or is the meaning of motherhood found at 2 AM when two children are throwing up, and we hold one in our arms while pulling the sheets off the other’s bed? Is the meaning of motherhood really about knowing when the job is done, and the child is grown?  I don’t know!

I just couldn’t do it.

I thought I might write about my own Mom. I remembered a vivid dream from my childhood, a wonderful dream that she was sitting on the edge of my bed, with her cool hand on my cheek. I dreamed of the comfort and softness of that hand, and I leaned into its gentle touch. I thought it was real; but I woke up to an empty room, a feverish chill, and a sense of loss.  My Mom was only a room away, but I needed her and dreamed her there beside me.  I thought to write about that memory as the heart of Mother’s Day, but I just couldn’t do it.

The theme of motherhood is just too big, to broad, too complex, too deep and too much for me to understand, much less express. It is my DNA, my blood, my breath and my soul. It is the meaning of my life, and the definition of my spirit.  It was my dream for so many years, my job for many more, and my fondest memory now.

How can I write about Mother’s Days past? My very first one, when I was only weeks into my first much-yearned-for pregnancy; Paul brought me breakfast in bed, and a flower in a bud vase. “Whatever happens”, I said that morning, “I am a mother now, and nothing can take that away.”  How can I write about the red crayon roses and crooked “I love you” notes? The poems, the flowers, the handprints in cardboard frames?  How could I ever find the words to capture the purity and sweetness of those times?

I can’t do it.

I thought to write about my happiness this year, knowing that my three will all be home for the weekend.  I thought I could find a way to say that I am excited and melancholy all at once.  That I feel them coming closer, moment by moment. I feel them in my tingling fingers and rushing blood.  I wait for them. I hear their steps at my door.  I dread the moment when they will leave.

I tried to craft each post, but I couldn’t quite master any of them.  I tried to write about Mother’s Day, but I just can’t seem to do it.

I wish all of my blogging friends a wonderful Mother’s Day. May you be surrounded by your children, your Mom’s,  and your very best memories!

8 thoughts on “I can’t do it.

    • Thank you and the same to you!
      I thought of you at 3 AM when I woke up worrying about the kids driving here, getting back home to their jobs, heading for Chicago to protest next week, you know…maybe catching the plague…!!

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  1. This was beautifully expressed, as usual. You are lucky to have all three at home for Mother’s Day. Enjoy the weekend. I have been more focused on the fact that I no longer have a mom (since 1998) than that my son won’t be home for the weekend, so I’ve been thinking more from the perspective of a daughter than a mother.

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    • I’m so sorry. I think that this year I am also intensely aware of how lucky I am to still have my Mom. Every passing year makes it more precious.
      Thanks for your kind words, too; I’ve been thoroughly enjoying your posts this week, and sharing with some like minded friends. Keep up the good work!

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  2. I don’t wish my mother back here on this planet – she was so very ready to cross over at 96! However, I sometimes dream of hearing her calling my name the way she did when she had something interesting to share – like a great sentence she just found in a book. Or a piece of music that created pleasure pain through her chest.

    I had no children, but my friends sometimes bemoan the fact that they are never finished being a parent. Just different needs!

    Happy Mother’s Day from one who chose to be a doting Aunt.

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