I remember distinctly the first time I got the message “Life is good!” from my son. He was four months old. It was five in the morning.
I was standing in my robe in a daze of sleep, or perhaps more accurately lack of it, changing his diaper. I was going through the motions getting him re-outfitted when I noticed his face. He was staring right up at me— beaming. He looked so happy, ecstatic really. He was just lying there, perky as ever despite the hour, with a huge grin on his face. A face that said, “Life is good. I love this!” Just being alive was enough to make him exultant. It was arresting. I was sort of dumbstruck by seeing that amount of joy on such a little person during what was such an ordinary moment. I can still remember it; it was so profound.
I know mother’s day is about being thankful for mothers. And now that I am one I can really see why. There is no end to the amount of tasks a mother does and well. I mean in addition to your own needs you are also always assessing and meeting the needs of another little human being, or two. To say nothing of the other ordinary things that must be done: dinner, lunch, breakfast, bathing, vacuuming, gardening, money making etc. etc. The list goes on and on. And don’t get me wrong, I love a little gratitude headed my way, but really, as I approach my first mother’s day with my son out of the womb I can’t help but be thankful instead for my son.
I can’t help but cherish all the moments that wouldn’t exist without him. Like for example last month when I rounded the door from our bedroom to the bathroom, something I do EVERY morning, my son spied me from the living room. You would’ve thought he won the lottery. He was so excited to see me! Me, who I might add he had just seen an hour ago. He was ecstatic. This time though he was a little older and had more tricks down, meaning he could actually move around. So he flailed his arms, smiled huge and came racing down the hallway on his hands and knees squealing gleefully into my open arms.
I log these moments in my brain and awareness. Cognizant that one day in the not so distant future, he’s probably going to walk in the door shrug his backpack off his shoulders and say something like, “Hey mom,” without even a hint of ecstasy in his voice.
But for now, and for always, I can’t help but being so grateful for this being who has taught me that even getting out of bed and going to the bathroom in the morning is a moment worthy of joy in the extreme.
So this mother’s day I’m thankful not just for the moms who make it happen, (because that is a feat) but also for all the little beings who remind you that life is worth living, and not only that, it’s composed of joy.