By Katie Bugbee
About the Writer:
Katie Bugbee is a writer, editor and Managing Editor at Care.com. She also has two tykes at home. She blogs about the drama of being a working mama.
Mother's Day is coming and my husband -- who is terribly afraid of disappointing -- and not the best at picking up hints -- wants gift ideas. I don't have any. I do know that I don't want a fancy brunch where I have to pack snacks, referee the kids and shove food in my mouth so we can get out of there before all Hell breaks loose. I know that I want to sleep in. And I know that I want to celebrate being a mom with my husband -- just us -- on a date night. That's it. Oh, and I want my kids to know the following things:
1. I love you more than you can even imagine. Actually, love isn't even the right word. It's like an ache. It's a love that brings tears to my eyes just thinking about it. It's the love that makes me feel full and empty at the same time. Empty, because I know that if anything were to happen to you, this love could destroy me.
2. Your dad and I will always work tirelessly to stay together. As you grow up, you'll realize that your life is surrounded by divorce. This is why you have 7 grandparents. Dad and I started our marriage knowing it will always be "work." We will never take this union for granted.
3. I won't be your friend. And I won't be the cool mom either. My job is to guide you and protect you. Hopefully, you will trust me and respect this. And hopefully, we'll be more like friends once we get you to college.
4. I hope you'll always laugh at yourself. One of the best things I learned from my mom is to never take yourself too seriously. Laugh. A lot. And laugh loud. It helps.
5. We had more than one kid -- for you. This parenting-thing is hard. If I could have stopped at 1, I would have. But right now, at ages 2 and 4, you are best friends. I know this will change throughout the years, but you will need each other as you get older. And you'll need each other when you have to take care of Dad and me.
6. I work to be a better mom. I tried the SAHM thing and it wasn't for me. Every person is different. But know this, you always come first -- and you always will.
7. You are both my favorite. I didn't think it was possible. Really. But I do, truly, love you both equally. True: some days, or hours, one of you rises above the other. But when all is quiet and I think about how much I love you (yup, I do this), it's the same.
8. I want you to leave the house. I feel that part of being a parent is giving your kids the skills and confidence to venture out on their own. That's why, no matter how much I want you to live in your Ikea-bedroom-sets forever, I will be pushing you to live at college (I guess I should first say: please go to college, it's awesome) and explore living in new cities after you graduate. Just call me -- often.
9. Be good people. Be kind to strangers, to colleagues... to your parents. Be generous with your friends and with those who need help. And be good to yourselves. This world can be tough, but have fun and see the goodness in others. It will make everything a lot more enjoyable.