4 tips for lifting your spirits as Mother’s Day approaches
As an expat living in Dubai, with all three of my kids living in Canada, the looming approach of Mother’s day could potentially send me down the ‘woe is me’ path. The onslaught of promotional cards, flowers and reminders of our special day can be emotionally exhausting. How about you? Now that your nest is empty, or not as full as you would like, how are you going to prevent the Mother’s day blues?
I may have been doing a bit of ‘pity party’ rambling when MJ, my dear friend, reminded me that feeling sorry for myself is my choice. Groan. She said if I don’t like the path I am on, then find another path. Double groan. Sometimes, the wisdom of friends gives us the boot upside the head that we need to get our priorities straightened out.
What this means is that I am responsible for my own happiness. Sometimes I find that growing up is so hard to do! With this newfound outlook that I will have to take care of me on Mother’s day, what will I do? It puts a new perspective on it when I take ownership of my own happiness.
Please note, this post is being written before ‘le monsieur’ knows his schedule for ‘that day’ in May. That means that I can’t even make him responsible for making me feel pampered, loved and cherished. It’s all up to me. Sometimes being the adult really cramps my ‘pity party’ style.
Right then, enough is enough. How am I going to solve the ‘taking care of you, in this case taking care of me’, problem?
After much thought, here is what I think I will do to make Mother’s day special.
- Honour older women: Since my own mom passed many years ago, and I miss her dearly, I am going to contact the older women in my life who have been positive role models and who mean a great deal to me. For those who haven’t embraced the technological world of e-cards, I will phone them in the days leading up to Mother’s day, so we can have a good old chat, and I can let them know how special they are to me. A phone call from Dubai to North America can be challenging, but it can be done!
- Honour my friends who have lost children. This is a tough phone call to make, and in some cases, may not be appropriate. It is a dose of sobering reality for me, and I know that I need to reach out before Mother’s day to let these friends know that even though their child has passed, they are being thought of at this time of year. When thinking about how I would start this call, it might be something like, ‘I know Mother’s day is approaching and I just want you to know that I am thinking of you and sending you a hug’.
- Honour other moms: Mother’s Day in North America is always on a Sunday. Here in Dubai, Sunday is the first day of the work week, so I know that I will be meeting with my usual group of women to practice speaking English. I know now that our topic for the day will be Mother’s day and I will bring a box of chocolates for us to share as we celebrate the trials and tribulations of being a mom. Definitely a win/win, chocolates and chatting!
- Honour myself: The final thing I will do is buy myself a bouquet of flowers. The key is that I will choose to be happy buying them for myself. I will celebrate the fact that my kids are moving forward with their lives, living where they need to be, and growing into independent, capable adults. The tulips are lovely at this time of year, so bring them on!
Of course I would love to have my children nearby as I miss more than they will ever know. On the flip side, I know that they are building their own lives and that they are where they need to be, even if I wish it was closer to me. Something about giving kids roots and wings comes to mind, a topic for another day, I am sure.
Anyhow, on that note, I hope you will consider how to honour yourself as a mom, on Mother’s day, and everyday.
Until next week.