“Was what I just said really true?” I silently asked myself. I’d just claimed I felt sad that I would not be with my children on Mother’s Day. In the moment I did feel a little sad. While not an unusual thought for a mother to have, I questioned it.
My children moved to other cities many years ago. If pressed, I could not remember the last Mother’s Day I spent with them. I have long been at peace that this day is not celebrated around mushroom quiche and mimosa toasts to my mom awesomeness.
I have been greatly spared from the biggest separation sorrows that so many are experiencing. Still, week after week I do not see my remoting work family, my siblings who live in this same city, and countless in my community clan. There is no escaping that I cannot look closely into their eyes, hear their laughter live, or give an unspoken “How much I love you!” hug.
For me, the pandemic has been a paradox when it comes to being a parent. On the one hand, I am reminded of distance. On the other hand, I have never felt closer. Occasional phone calls have become more frequent video calls. And for the first time I am on the receiving end of my children’s deep concern for my well-being as they ask about my masks, my grocery shopping, and whether I’ve fully paused on my social life that often made theirs pale in comparison.
The truth is this Sunday will be a delightful day for me like most Sundays are. I will do a little yoga. I will read the local paper and the New York Times. I’ll listen to my favorite podcast (probably taking notes). I will enjoy leisurely chopping vegetables for a relaxing dinner. My beau will take me for a drive in the country. I’ll fall asleep happy.
I will also think a lot about my children. Benjamin, who—just as the pandemic broke out—took his prayers and his talents to a new job in hot spot Los Angeles. Jack, who elected to spend the months ahead fighting forest fires instead of being safely inside his Sacramento home. Could I be more proud? And then are my stepdaughters—two teachers and one entrepreneur beauty creative—each of whom enrich my life as I witness theirs with admiration.
On Sunday I will hear my children’s voices as I see their faces on my Mac, feel my pride, and feel their love. What more could a mother ask for?
What feelings come up for you on Mother’s Day?
How can you create meaningful days?
How might you connect despite the distance?