A Mother's Day
In truth, my mother's day went like most of my days: up, down, up, waaayyy down, up, up, down and UP.
Darin had to work and we started dog-sitting for our boss that day, so the morning was harried as we had to head over to her house before taking him to work. And I had stuff i wanted to do with the girls so we couldn't just go in our pjs like usual, so I got us dressed in pretty dresses and even put flowers in my hair. Felt pretty proud to get us all the door on time.
After we dropped off Darin we headed down the road to the most wonderful farm that recently reopened for the season. They had a slight delay in opening this year because of a new addition to their family. I had the luck of meeting tiny newborn Indie as her mama and daddy tended to the brick bread oven and chatted with friends.
Just as we pulled up, guess who showed up too? Jorden and Becky and crew. It appeared that South Fork Farm was a popular stop for mothers that day.
One of the kindest, most thoughtful, creative, beautiful moms I know.
After visiting with the farm family and new baby awhile, we picked out our goods. Lucy chose us a bunch of kale, carrots and beets, and we chose a loaf of freshly baked picnic bread to snack on.
We bid our friends good bye (they were heading off for a hike) and headed into Coloma. I wanted to take the girls to the Amerian River Conservancy's nature museum/bookshop there, which was a bit harder than I'd hoped. Lucy was immediately grabbing the taxidermy animals (a barn owl) that had just been treated with some kind of toxic chemical! Needless to say I washed her hands very well immediately but I was a little nervous with her running around in there after that. I was wearing Polly in the Beco pack, but she was wriggling and wanting down. Lucy was reading all the children's books and had them scattered on the floor while I briefly chatted with the docent. We decided to take a walk instead. We saw a blacksmith at work and then ended up at our favorite cafe, the Argonaut.
It's nice at the Argonaut that the girls can sit outside, walk up and down this walkway, and safely look down between the posts without risk of falling, Phew. The couple that sat down next to us even offered my girls a taste of their ice cream (!) We shared some snacks and I had the best cup of coffee which brought the spring to my step for awhile.
laughing at her sis.
We were wandering down to the river, but Polly was clearly too tired for any more gallivanting. When she's that tired, the second her head hits her carseat, she's out! We headed home and I figured out how to use the self timer on Darin's camera so I could photograph my dress. It happens to be one of my favorites and I wore it to CarolAnn's wedding when I was 34 weeks pregnant with Lucy. Some of the seams were splitting (no surprise there) so my mom recently sewed them up for me and washed and dried it, which was all it took to shrink it up a tad shorter so it didn't need to be hemmed. It has a lightweight gauzy textured feel to it and the colors are my favorite for springtime. Sometimes in just the right outfit or dress, I really feel like I'm embodying the mother I always wanted to be. That's how I felt in this get up. I also wore earrings Emily made me and a necklace Addie made me to honor a couple other rad mommas I know.
Right when Polly woke up I decided to meet my mom at the local nursery to pick out a plant for each of us as a Mother's Day treat. This is where my afternoon fell apart. Polly was listless, still acting tired as I carried her, after having been sick earlier in the week. It had me a little freaked out. She has lost weight (and she can't really spare any, being a very small child) and her appetite hadn't fully come back so her lack of energy didn't exactly surprise me, but it bothered me how long it was taking for her to get back to her normal cheerful self.
I had that on my mind and Lucy running completely amok, up and down the nursery's tidy (and BUSY) aisles, plucking the signs from amongst the plants and depositing them elsewhere, tripping people, touching flowers. I desperately tried to listen to my mom as she helped me find good naturally deer resistant flowers and shrubs for my front garden, but I was so distracted. Lucy of course needed to go pee pee, they have a row of outhouses at the far end, and then Polly started crying for water. I eventually had to basically carry them both out to the car, crying, while people gawked of course, only to discover that my water jar was empty and then having to run back in to find my mom and get her keys and dig up a plastic water bottle from her trunk. All while sweating in my beautiful dress and dead flowers ;)
My mom came out minutes later with arms and wagon laden with plants and gifts. I had to quickly and ungraciously accept my gifts and then take off, watching Polly in the rear view mirror as she kept falling back asleep and I'd say "are you okay honey? What's going on?" and reach my hand back to feel her head and get her to look at me. Anyway, it was a relief about twenty minutes later to call my mom up, thank her for the lovely gifts, and let her know that Polly did a huge poo once we got home and immediately cheered up, playing and laughing and running around like normal. Luckily my mom and I have plenty of good mothering moments together to be able to laugh about this one silly "Mother's Day."
Once Daddy gets home, everything gets easier. Reinforcements! He even picked us up a pizza for dinner.
Instructing daddy on how high he has to swing her; it has to be like a "roller coaster!"
Outside in our backyard on warm May evenings, hanging out and playing and swinging with my little family, might be my favorite feeling ever.
"Let's talk about pteranodons." pretending to be a paleontologist. "They have families. They are nice. They don't step on other dinosaurs. They are meat eaters. And they don't eat any more dinosaurs. Some pteranodons live, Mommy!" I ask her where they live. "They live in Jurassic Park!" (where does she get this stuff?!!)
It feels like anything you can say about being a mother has been said and rings sort of hollow, whether negative or positive. No matter how true it is, a statement like "It's the most challenging and rewarding thing I've ever done," instantly falls flat. Every mother has a different experience but we all feel very personally and intricately woven as human beings into this act of bearing and raising another human. And thus we have the very worthwhile desire to share, to talk about the experience, to communicate through language, about this wonderful and vast responsibility if and when we choose it. Any possible language, any words given to the description of such an experience, can only brush against its reality, like pebbles thrown against a stone wall. There are endless words and ways I could share about being a mother to my very special little daughters. I waited for a long time to have my babies and they are my very dreams come true, come into walking, talking, crying, laughing, kissing reality. They push me as close as I ever thought I'd get to insanity. They erupt my heart in a volcano of love. As a citizen of the human world, their births, their persons help me see each and every living creature in a new way, full of compassion, full of understanding, full of hope. We are wild at the core and we all need someone to love us as fully as a mother.