Mother's Day has become a Facebook contest. Who got the biggest bouquet? Who got a spa day? Who got breakfast in bed or didn't have to make dinner? Who got new jewelry? I'll be honest. Getting on social media on Mother's Day when you're a single mom kind of sucks. I envy the women that get to do and enjoy these things. Meanwhile, my daughter picked me some dandelions out of the yard that I still need to mow, put glittery lotion on my back that I know will never come off, stuck her dirty fingers in the cake batter that I was making for myself, and the closest thing to jewelry I'm getting is one of her plastic tiaras while we play princesses. Don't get me wrong, I am all for supporting mothers no matter what their situation is - single, married, one kid, ten kids. It's hard on all of us. But being a single mother is an entirely different ball game. Single moms don't get luxury days, and Mother's Day is no exception. We still have to work, do homework for our night college courses, cook, clean, do the laundry that's been piling up all week, and try not to stress ourselves to the point of a mental breakdown.
It's easy to be bitter, to pity yourself, to get wrapped up in the day-to-day, and envy those that have help. This year I've chosen to look at things a little bit differently. I know that at some point on Mother's Day, my daughter will get caught up playing with toys that I bought her, and the smile on her face will be more beautiful than any flowers you could buy. She'll want to bake or help me make lunch or dinner, and though I know it will be messy, her eyes will shine brighter than any diamonds in the world as she watches a lot of nothings become something we can enjoy together. And when we go to bed that night, we'll snuggle up and argue about who loves who more, and those words will be sweeter to me than any Hallmark card could ever dream of being.
I know Mother's Day will just be another day for a lot of us. Most of us won't get cards or boxes with pretty bows or a massage, no matter how desperately we all deserve it. But I'm choosing to see Mother's Day as a day to remind myself of all I've accomplished, all I've been able to give my daughter, all I've taught her, and to remind myself of all the love I get from her every single day. Flowers die, cards get thrown away, spa days are over as soon as you walk out the door, but spending the day reflecting on all I've had since becoming a mom and all I've learned by being a single mom is worth more than anything money can buy. As single moms we don't usually get the recognition we deserve, but we get all of that back tenfold in a love that some people will never know. And in case no one else tells you... Happy Mother's Day, mama.