This year, I got THE BEST present for Mother’s Day.

Are you a present person? I wouldn’t go so far as to say that presents are the way to my heart, but I definitely like them…a lot.

As a kid, I remember spending a whole lot of time imagining all the amazing stuff I wanted for Christmases and birthdays. Occasionally, those wishes came true. When I was about five I came downstairs on Christmas morning to find a beautiful porcelain doll sitting on the settee. She was the fulfillment of all my five year old hearts desires.

And then there were years when I was disappointed. My ten year old self just couldn’t understand why my parents would be so cruel as to not get me a horse for my birthday. We lived in Mexico City (population 30 million) at the time.

Over time, of course, the things I dream and fantasize about have changed. At age 16, all I wanted was a disc man. These days, my hopes and dreams are a little simpler…

‘Cause I’m a mom now. So instead of a fancy necklace or diamond earrings, what I tend to fantasize about is sleeping in until 9 am.

If you had asked me a week ago what I wanted for Mother’s Day, and if I was being totally honest,  I might have said a day with no kids would be great.

An acquaintance of mine was once sent away by her hubs for a weekend at a fancy spa, complete with booked brunches and pedicures, for Mother’s Day. Yeah. Pretty stellar.

That’s the thing about being a mom. It’s so all encompassing, so overwhelming, so everything all the time, that sometimes, it feels like the best way to celebrate it would be to get away from it.

Well, I didn’t get a weekend away this year, and don’t get me wrong,  I would happily accept a couple days of full on pampering (or even just 8 hours of books and movies and tea in bed) but the gift I got this year… it was WAY better than that.

Ok, so it wasn’t a real gift, but I got those too. From the Hubs I got two beautiful hanging baskets for my front porch – purchases I had been wanting to make for weeks.

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Exactly what I would have picked myself.

From my boys, and my incredible mother in law, these vases:

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I will treasure these for years to come. When my boys hands no longer fit in mine, these will be a tangible reminder of exactly where they are at right now. These are priceless gifts.

But even these precious gifts were not the best gift I received this year. In fact, I didn’t even get it on Mother’s Day.

Instead, my perfect gift came Saturday evening, after a crazy busy day, as my little family spent some much needed quality time together unwinding from a week of stress and hurry.

My perfect gift was a simple moment – a moment in time where I was unhurried, where I wasn’t busy planning something in my head or figuring out a next step, or completing a task that needs doing. I looked at my boys running around on the grass, watched them laughing, breathless from running, noticed the setting sunlight casting a rosy glow on their skin, and I felt – really felt – the fullness of the joy of being their mom.

That was it. That perfect moment, was my perfect gift.

Those moments are all too rare. In the swift march of life, I get so caught up in doing, I forget how blessed I am to have two happy, healthy boys. That being their mama is the best and most incredible gift I will ever receive.

This Mother’s Day I got the best present ever – the gift of perspective. And I’m going to hold on to it as long as I can.

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