It’s Always Difficult for me to Enjoy Mothers Day..But this year I did… and I don’t know how

Mothers Day always is around the time of the anniversary of my fathers death (May 2), his birthday (May 6), My parents anniversary ( May 12). I also remember the mothers who have lost children, specifically my best friend.  This year was extra shitty as a football team mate of sons passed away and the funeral was on Friday.  A 10 year old little boy..the same age as my son.  I laid in bed Thursday night with my little boy watching him sleep knowing that the mother of his friend was probably laying in her sons bed crying…. Seeing my son lay there so peacefully in his bed… trying to get out of my head the devastating thought of his friend probably looking the same peaceful way in the coffin he would be laid to rest in the next day. I think as parents we have all had close calls with our kids. It only takes a piece of a second for anyone’s life to change forever, for the unspeakable worse. I went to the funeral Friday. My shrink told me not to force Jett to go.  I had to leave early. I was sobbing in the back of the standing room only church.  It was a beautiful service, they always are…. the family was even holding it together. Then there was me… someone who wasn’t close to the family.  Jett had only played with him this one past season… but I knew the kid…. he was a gentle, kind, wonderful, thoughtful, one of a kind angel on this earth that was taken too soon. The funerals, as impossibly hard as they are have a sort of magic to them.  Family is there, friends are there, sharing stories and memories and everyone is there for one another. However, I know from my best friends loss of her son, again another delightful angel on earth taken way too soon unfairly in a freak sickness, that is the after…. After all the people leave…. the next day and the next after that… the loneliness…. the questions in your mind repeating…. friends staying away or leaving permanently because they don’t know what to do or what to say.  They still have their kids… how can they talk about normal life to their friend that lost their child….. Its selfish isn’t it? To be happy around someone who lost EVERYTHING that mattered.

No matter how well I prepare or try to forget all the past sadness surrounding Mothers Day, the week is always shitty. Life throws us curve balls, especially when we have kids, and this year was full of them.  Basically I had to suck up my depression for my kids. My daughter starts high school in the fall and I tell you … it is already in full swing. Because half of my high school years were shit due to my dads suicide I am extra sensitive to make sure my daughters high school years are frickin magical and she goes after every opportunity available.  So last week, my shittiest week of the year I had to suck up my depression and grief for her. I could not allow the cycle of pain to continue on to her. My grief was hidden the best I could and I focused… (overly on her, but in a good way). I was a mom taxi all week from 2 pm until 7 pm daily. From getting the kids to school, to their activities which included; gymnastics, dance team, dance class, private lessons for the dance team, Jetts auditions, ect. I was busy. There were only 8 incoming Freshmen that auditioned for the dance team out of the 1,200 kids coming into the school in the fall. I was so proud of Sedona for just showing up, then I was just glowing for her seeing it through. She didn’t make it, but stayed with a positive attitude and I know she will be more prepared for next year to give it another go. We had many talks about the importance of just showing up last week. Every day I quizzed her.

Me:” What is #1?”

Sedona: “Just showing up”

Me: #2

Sedona: Confidence

Me: #3

Sedona: Keep going if I mess up.

Me: #4 NEVER APOLOGIZE

Sedona: but…I like to apologize..

Me: No, unless you accidentally kick someone in the face do not apologize. If you mess up, you keep going and at the end you say, “Thank you for having me audition”… and get out!

Just showing up, confidence, and keeping going are three things that will not only get her through life, but help her succeed when others just don’t show up and give up.  They are simple rules with great potential impact. Yes, you need to practice, be prepared, and be good at what ever you are going after too. However, a person with confidence and skill will get the job over the person with no confidence every time. Now I am not saying be a cocky asshole… I used to always tell my girls to have relaxed confidence on stage. Those were the girls that always did well. Nice people with confidence.

My best Mothers Day gift was seeing my daughter transitioning into an adult.  She really appreciated me and all the effort, time and work I have put into her!:) SHE WAS THE MOTHER ON MOTHERS DAY!! On Mothers Day I got breakfast in bed, She forced her brother to take a shower and then forced him to sit through a Shakespeare play at the high school… haha… When we got home I got to garden and drink wine out front while she forced Jett to help her clean the house. When I got back in the almost perfect house to end their drudgery, Jett was sulking, saying Sedona did most of it. I sat both of them down and said that I didn’t care how clean the house got, and it looked amazing. All I wanted out of Mothers Day was Just to be appreciated for all the work I do for you every day….. I really think they understood how much I do for them and I really felt appreciated…. Then Sedona forced Jett to help her give me a pedicure while we watched the Amazing Race… It was fabulous…. It was a great day. It was a day I didn’t want to run away with my passport to Africa…. but I’m keeping it handy just in case.

This post started so sad and ended so happy… and that is exactly how my Mothers Day weekend went, so it is fitting to end it here. I am the luckiest human in the world that these tow amazing kids chose me to be their mom…. Every day is a gift and a gift that could be taken away at any moment. I need to enjoy every day more and not take anything for granted.

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About Vanessa Bednar

I am an actor, a writer, a mom, an adventurer.

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