If you are one of my neighbors you probably saw me out there, pushing that little gas mower around while my husband played with the kids. You probably thought, really? It’s Mother’s Day!
What you probably didn’t see was the bliss in my face as each row of grass was neatly cut after I walked by. How I may have paused at the top of the hill while the sun filtered through Crab Apple blossoms.
When I was a kid, I used to think my dad was a jerk cause the minute he got home from work, he played with us as my mom when out and mowed the lawn. All I could think was, hasn’t she worked enough today?
Fast forward, many years, I am at home with a babe of my own, getting frustrated as Art mows our tiny city lot as I hold a crying baby who won’t nap because the lawnmower is going. I call my mom in a voice that must have been filled with tears. She laughs a little as I explain my frustration with what seems an ongoing and weekly yard struggle. My mom gently, in only a way mom can, tells me that when we were little, she would wait for the minute my dad was home so she could start mowing. I was sitting there on the phone thinking “Really, Mom?!?!” She explained when you mow the lawn, it blocks out the rest. It’s just you, the outdoors and that long grass that gives way to the blade leaving a neat space behind you.
I understand now, the need for a little room to escape, yet the simple pleasure of a job well done. All neat and tidy, no little hands undoing your work behind you. I understand how the warmth of the sun, the sweat of good work, and the breeze, all pull you back to your center.
As a parent your work is never done, but if you can somehow find a way to let your work give you a little pleasure, or escape, your life will be so much the richer for it. This is the real thing about parenting, you let people do the jobs they are good at, or need to do to grow
This Mother’s Day I thank my mom for knowing where to find her center. I thank my husband for knowing its all about walking the thin line between getting things done and relaxing. Most of all I thank my family for giving me a center to pull back to.