We Are Both Right

Best of: Bringing Tears to Our Eyes

tears of joy

What makes you cry tears of joy? ©davidlat/stock.xchng

For my mother it’s the song “Pomp and Circumstance.” She could hear the hopeful notes being played as far away from a graduation ceremony as could possibly be (think Musak in the elevator), and she’ll still find herself welling up, imagining polyester gowns, squared-off caps and optimistic speeches that take too long.

Tears of joy — a phenomena that you’ll (hopefully) experience a lot as a parent. And the thing about crying happy tears is that you never know what will set you off. Maybe it’s a sweet homemade card or one of your kids doing something uncharacteristically nice for their siblings.

Whatever it is, despite you tears, you feel good inside and you are once again reminded how lucky you are to be a parent.

So in honor of Mother’s Day on Sunday we’re sharing our favorite ways our little ones bring tears to our eyes. Pass the tissues!

  • First steps
  • Preschool graduation ceremonies where they sing songs you wouldn’t expect — ask Suzanne about “I Believe I Can Fly”
  • Dance recitals
  • Watching a child sleep
  • Solos at the school band concert
  • School-sponsored Mother’s Day teas, complete with crumbly homemade cookies and watered-down juice
  • Watching your little athlete be handed the game ball
  • Thinking back to the delivery room
  • The Song “Five Days Old” by the Laurie Berkner Band (gets Amanda every time)
  • When they brush my hair
  • The last day of school (and camp) goodbyes with friends
  • Pictures of my children giggling and playing, full of love
  • The special moments when you see siblings really connect (and dare we say, adore each other)

What about you? What makes you cry happy tears?

Reflections on the Joy of Motherhood

The joy of motherhood

How on earth did I get so lucky?

I am a mother. A simple enough statement. Four little words. But the meaning behind them is immeasurable.

I am a nurse, a cook, a chauffeur, a therapist, a teacher, a party coordinator, an ATM. A personal shopper, a medic, a protector, a camp counselor,  a coach. A cruise director, a life organizer, a drill sergeant, a travel agent.

I am a mother.

Every once in a while someone will do a story on how much a mother is “worth,” that is if there was such a thing as being paid to be a mother, how much would it be. ($211,813 per year for me according to this site.)

But amazingly enough, for all I give my children, they give me more. Oh, so much more.

Because those four little words — I am a mother — means I get to be around three wonderfully, amazing children who fill my life with love and hope and endless happiness. No matter how bad or desperate things get on the “outside” — in other parts of my life, in the world at large — I have these three reset buttons waiting for me. Loving me. And needing me to love them.

First steps. Notes in a lunchbox. A baby falling asleep on my chest. Surprise parties. A big hit in a little league game. Preschool. Riding the subway. A hundred on a spelling test. First words. DisneyWorld. Baskets at basketball games. Science projects. Climbing the Rocky Mountains in a rainstorm. First note played on a trumpet. Pierced ears. First chorus concert. Scoring a soccer goal. Birthday parties. Handmade necklaces. Cards, cards and more cards. Coming home from the hospital. Moving into a new house. The smell of a baby after a bath. And “google” more, as my daughter A. would say.

And don’t get me wrong. Being a parent isn’t all songs and roses. Hardly. Many of my darkest moments — the ones that terrified me or angered me or made me feel the least proud were a direct result of being a parent. And even on the days when they drive me the craziest (and oddly enough, maybe it is on the days they drive me the craziest), those are seconds when I’m the most aware of a mother’s love, and its ability to transcend everything.

I am a mother. I am happy.

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While technically we aren’t hosting a “Where We Meet Week,” in the interest of Mother’s Day, Suzanne and I have agreed to dedicate our posts this week to all things motherhood.