Finding the Right Mother’s Day Card

Finding the Right Mother’s Day Card

Finding the right Mother’s Day card has given me a headache in past years, especially if I waited too long and the selection was getting sparse. This year is different.

A Chance Meeting

Earlier this week, I was in the Hallmark aisle at Publix, selecting a Mother’s Day card for Mom. As I approached the section, I noticed a 30-ish young woman who seemed mildly exasperated.

“Sometimes it’s hard to find the right one,” I said.

”Yeah. My mom is a Strong Mother. All these gushing messages don’t ring true for me.”

”Don’t I know it!”

”The Strong Mother cards are near the bottom,” she added.

We said goodbye behind our colorful, handmade masks and I started my quest.

A Strong Mother

Her phrase, a strong mother, had made an impression. Rather than feeding a judgement about her mother, she had given our shared reality a positive spin.

Now I was in a different mood, focused on the best thing about my relationship with my mother. Laughter. We share a lot of wholesome, good-natured, joyful, loving, laughter. It was easy to find a funny card to make us both smile.

How Did My Mood Change?

Finding the right Mother’s Day card is a shared experience, especially among women. That was evident when the lady on the card aisle had two cards in her hand; one for her mother and one for her mother-in-law. In this shared energy, we were both open to share our feelings.

Be open to accept positive energy

Additionally, I have taken many small steps toward forgiveness in regards to Mom. She did the best she could do. I did the best I could do as a human being and a mother. And you are doing the best you can do.

Forgiveness of others opens up forgiveness of yourself

Finally, realize that forgiveness is incremental in nature. The relationship between a mother and her children is complex, taking many small steps to unravel until the last trace of hurt and anger are gone. Along the way, find ways to bring joy into the relationship right now.

Live in this moment with joy

Enjoy Yourself!

Whether or not you are a mother, you deserve happiness everyday, including Mother’s Day. Start the day with some deep, cleansing breaths and welcome joy into your life. Regardless of who raised you, thank your birth mother for bringing you into the world. Then continue to thank her or whomever cared for you… They helped you arrive where you are today.

If this is just too hard, take one step toward forgiveness by writing out your feelings on paper. Keep writing until you feel better, until the tears come less, until your body says, “That’s enough for today.” Repeat this tomorrow.. or next week.. whatever feels right to you.

Love and blessings,
Dawn

How to Keep it Light

My motto in life is keep it light. The tone of my laugh is perhaps unusual, although it sounds perfectly normal to me. Lifelong friends have told me they can find me in a crowded room by my laugh, which acts like a beacon, drawing them in.

Is a laugh acceptable in polite conversation?

My laugh doesn’t always seem appropriate. During holiday and New Year gatherings, I sometimes stick my foot right into the laugh. Are you wondering what subjects are acceptable in polite conversation? It seems there are so many pathways leading us into a swamp of quicksand. Here are some broad subjects I think you can safely navigate. Ask about their worst times. Offer up some specifics; the worst meal they created or ate, the worst grade they received in school, the worst motel they stayed in, the worst movie they saw. Chances are time has turned these experiences into humorous events.

Humor always works for me

I remember my worst sewing mistake. My father was 5’ 11” with a wiry build. His arms belonged on a linebacker, requiring a 36” sleeve. It had become increasingly difficult to find his preferred Western style shirts in a Medium size with a 36” sleeve. I had successfully sewn many tailored shirts, even for my dad. For Christmas 2008, I purchased a bright red denim and found the well-worn pattern in my sewing box. Carefully laying out the pieces, I measured the sleeve length of 36”.  Taking care throughout the process, I sewed the top-stitching perfectly, aligned the Mother of Pearl snaps with care, added the stitching on the pocket for his ever-present pencil with the clip, and cut the shirttail long, just as he liked.

As I carefully wrapped my gift, I imagined his face brightening into a broad smile as he lifted the lid and unfolded the tissue paper, knowing he would have a shirt that ended at his wrist instead of pulling four inches up his forearm. As he lifted my gift up from the package, I thought the sleeves looked odd. Dad hurriedly removed his 32” sleeved, store-bought shirt and tried on my gift. We all laughed long and hard. The end of the sleeves reached 2 inches below the tips of his fingers!

crazy sleevesI was so embarrassed!

What had happened? After some discussion with my mother, I realized I had forgotten men’s sleeves measured from the nape of the neck, not from the shoulder. I promised I would take it home and fix it, but try as I might, it was impossible. He never got another handmade shirt from me, but we still have the precious memory and the photo. I imagine he is laughing even now on the other side as he looks over my shoulder.

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