A Mother’s Day gift

As Mother’s Day 2022 neared, I recalled all sorts of moments — both as a daughter and a mom. And, honestly, some of those memories involved tears.

That isn’t what Mother’s Day is supposed to look like, is it? And yet, how often does any given day turn out just as we expect? 

I wrote about my less-than-perfect Mother’s Day in 2014, and with each passing year, I treasure that memory more. Because it’s real. It’s a glimpse at my less-than-perfect family doing our best in a less-than-perfect life.

As I reread that piece, it occurred to me that the best Mother’s Day gift of all could be the act of releasing expectations.

Mother’s Day Eve was a bit rough here, and I woke up Sunday with a sense of foreboding. Thankfully, Leo the dog needed a walk, so off we went. Along the way I realized I was still holding onto expectations. And I started letting them go.

Maybe the day would be awesome, everything I ever hoped for! Or maybe my people — or I — would fall apart like we did on Mother’s Day 2014. What if we let it be OK, I thought, whichever way it goes?

Because, like you, I know the many ways I love my people and where I stand in the gap, day after week after month after year. And also probably like you, I am aware of the wisdom and depth of character we all are gaining on our journeys.

When I stopped to think about it, I realized a day is just a day. Whatever happens or doesn’t happen in each 24-hour period has very little reflection on who we are or what we do.

The important thing to know — every day — is this: The life you are living is important, and who you are is priceless.


I’d like to encourage you to give yourself a gift. Take a few moments to honor your feelings about Mother’s Day or your experiences of the day. Maybe even write something down. Here’s a quick DIY guide to help you breathe, notice and write.  


Adapted from my “Loon Landing” newsletter, May 6, 2022.

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