First American Mother’s Day in the UK

The UK observes Mother’s Day on a different day than the US, so this is my second this year. UK Mother’s Day fell on Matt’s birthday, so this is the real one (USA! USA! USA!). The weather is beautiful, sunny and breezy. We’ve opened the windows. I’m on my third mimosa.

We had planned brunch, but rather than spending the $, I decided I’d just eat brunch food all day, instead. I’ve had avocado toast and eggs and smoked salmon. Strawberry waffles are in the works.

Matt is on top of making everything special. Dexter colored the living hell out of a card for me. We have been to the park and both kids are napping.

Mother’s Day used to be about grieving, for me. That crappy feeling that only those who have lost their moms can understand, where I’m so, so happy for people celebrating the love of their mothers, but every photo and tribute feels like a punch to the gut because my mom is gone.

And then I became a mom, and the meaning of the day shifted, but my path to being a mom was not what you would call smooth, so that hangs out in the corners of my psyche, as well, because the story of my family is bound to the story of my children and how and why they exist.

There was infertility, then treatments, then loss. Then failure after failure after failure.

And then there was Dexter.

I once commented, during one of his monthly updates, that “I can’t believe we have this awesome baby. And he LIVES in our HOUSE.” And that is now even more true.

Dexter is like this miniature person who is so clearly me and so clearly Matt but also so clearly his own self, and he just runs around here with all the confidence in the world, doing weird stuff and cobbling together language and having unimaginable opinions and making bizarre observations and I get to watch the whole thing.

And when Matt and I thought we had it all, along came Theo.

He is so small but already bursting with intensity and personality. Theo is desperately trying to say something and I’m keeping alert because I am already certain it is worth hearing. He coos and smiles and laughs but saves his biggest, softest grins for me, his mom.

There’s a romantic line on the brilliant Parks and Recreation, “I love you and I like you.”

I knew I’d love my kids. I hoped I’d like them. I didn’t expect to like them quite this much.

Today, I celebrate two things.

1. I remember my mom, and even though she was gone too soon, I remember how lucky I was to have her at all.

2. I honor my kids, for making me a mom, but also for being people I love and I like so damn much.


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