Long before I met and married my husband, I had several boyfriends in college. For the purposes of this story, we will call this last one “Chance” (not his real name). Now Mother’s Day isn’t a big deal in my family. We usually get a card and have lunch together, but my mom believes it’s a guilt-inducing Hallmark holiday and says that she would prefer us to be decent people the rest of the year. (Thank you, Mom!).
I knew that Mother’s Day was a really big deal for Chance’s mom. REALLY BIG! YUGE! THE END OF THE WORLD KIND OF LOVE! Chance was working about 2 hours north of the town I was working in and Chance’s parents lived about 2 hours south of me. Mother’s Day was coming up and Chance’s siblings were going to take his mom out for brunch on Saturday morning before Mother’s Day.
Chance and I were discussing possible Mother’s Day plans and he just really wanted to skip the whole thing. I was working my first job as a nurse and would be working a 12-hour shift from 7 PM to 7 AM Saturday morning. So we should skip it, right? But but but I know it was YUGE! So I said, “Let’s make this happen. It will mean so much to your mom. I will come home from work, take a shower, you can pick me up and I can take a nap on the way to your parents.” So he agreed.
Making it happen…
So I worked a horrible awful no-good shift that Saturday night that turned into a 14-hour shift. I blearily drove home from work, took a shower and we obviously started out later than we planned due to my late shift. Chance was nervous and starting to panic at this point. I am calling his parents to let them know we are running late but will be there. (FYI: we were going to a very casual restaurant that doesn’t do reservations, so it’s not like we would miss our chance at the restaurant). We arrived to Chance’s parent’s home about 30 min later than originally planned. I tried not to fall over as I got out of the car. I was exhausted but glad I could help make my boyfriend’s mom happy.
We walked in the door and his mother didn’t say ANYTHING! No “Hi, how are you?” No “Thanks for driving for hours to see me.” And no “Are you tired?” We got the silent treatment from Chance’s mom. Umm hmm. Read it again… we got the silent treatment from his mom for running 30 min late after driving 2 hours and working a 14-hour overnight shift. The best part of this whole thing was getting this awesome story to tell and making lots of people laugh over the years from telling it.
My Mother’s Day Wish…
As an older wiser person, I really wish I had said to heck with this and gotten a hotel room and gone to bed. But I didn’t. I proceeded to attend the most awkward Mother’s Day brunch I have ever been to (but at least it was quiet!) After I slept part of the day, I thought this is silly, I have exerted so much energy to make this person happy with zero appreciation. So I drove 4 hours up to see my mom who was thrilled to see me for a night and told me I didn’t have to feel obligated to see her but thanked me for my troubles.
Now I am married and have three small children. Mother’s Day still makes me feel a little awkward. I love my family dearly, but I am not an amazingly wonderful person simply because I have children.The best gift my children could ever give me is to be wonderful people of character the other 364 days a year. People of character to their family, their friends and their small and large communities. And I hope I never hold them back.