Have you noticed that Mother's Day is upon us again? That wonderful day of the year where we celebrate all things Mom, Mommy and Momma? That day of the year that strikes terror into the hearts of men in every walk of life, on every continent on the planet?
Yup. That event is hurtling toward us in T-minus 12 days. And, you can bet your bottom dollar, we Mommas are counting.
And, within just a month of celebrating Mom, we get to frolic in the joy of Father's Day. A holiday for which most women plan copiously. One that doesn't strike fear in anyone, except maybe florists, who can't expect squat to come from this day on the calendar.
Now, I'm not going to speak to what a guy wants on Father's Day (s.e.x.) because I am no expert on that portion of the program (more s.e.x. would be even better) but I think I can confidently say guys don't want a new tie (unless it is being used as part of the s.e.x. And, if it is? Please keep that to yourself.)
But, right here and now I am going to tell you what your wife, the MOTHER OF YOUR CHILDREN, wants for Mother's Day: to be left alone.
Yes. That is right. She wants time. And not the kind of time she has alone during the week, while you are at work, so she can do the laundry or go to work or get the house in order.
She wants some down time. And, without sounding offensive, that may or may not include you and/or the kids.
Now, the most generous and loving Moms I know are treated to breakfast in bed, consisting of a meal prepared by toddlers that contains burned bacon, half-raw pancakes, and fully raw eggs. The remaining portion of the morning is at church wearing a macaroni necklace the preschool teacher thought was a "GREAT GIFT!". And the afternoon is spent strolling around the zoo, after eating gourmet at McDonald's.
These are the kind of willing, patient, giving Mothers that we all strive to be. Generally, we ARE those Moms, 364 days of the year.
But, on Mother's Day? I'm don't strive to be that Mom. And, believe it or not, your wife probably doesn't, either.
Now, I'm also not one to spit out the toddler breakfast and pronounce it disgusting. No, I'll feed it to the dogs after everyone leaves the room. And, I'll darn sure have a breakfast bar in my bedside table that I'll eat on the down low so my stomach doesn't disturb the sermon during church.
I've done my time wearing my share of macaroni necklaces, too. Even on off occasions like the Monday of Vacation Church Camp, when I received three of them at the same time and was about laughed off the planet by the fine people in the Taco Bell drive-thru. Wearing one to church on Mother's Day doesn't phase me in the least.
But, if you try to get all cutesy with me and take me to the zoo, which I clearly outgrew, say, THIRTY YEARS AGO? That's where I draw my personal line in the sand.
On this day, I want to be left the heck alone, preferably on a deserted island. With a person who graduated summa cum laude from the Massage Institute of Sweden and has the hands to prove it.
Seriously, I want to do my own thing. I want someone, who has no agenda but to meet my non-sexual needs, to attend to me.
I want the darn day off from everything that looks, tastes, or smells like "Mommy" work. And, believe it or not, the zoo IS Mommy work.
So, husbands? If your wife is like me and you are searching for the perfect gift? After she has "eaten" breakfast, worn her fashionable necklace, and attended church, take the kids on a very long play date outside the house. Kiss your wife goodbye, tell her you've left her favorite lunch and dessert in the fridge (which you bought on Saturday!), remind her the bath tub has been drawn, the bed is the perfect place to take a nap, and her favorite movie is awaiting a click on the remote.
Then leave with a smile on your face.
When a few hours have passed and you must come back? Arrive with the dinner you picked up, feed it to the kids, let them go and kiss her sleepy head, and put them to bed. Maybe, by then, she'll be rested enough to recognize you and the kids and be pumped she is a Mommy again.
And, who knows? By that point, she might be relaxed enough to forget it is Mother's Day. She might even forget it is May. Heck, she might even be so groggy from her relaxing Mother's Day alone that she would buy into the concept that she slept until June.
If that happens? She might gladly acknowledge that it is late on Father's Day. And, because she's a planner and knows exactly the gift you want...Well...you know........
(Seriously, dudes. TALK TO YOUR WIFE TODAY. Ask her what she wants on Mother's Day. It may be as simple as some time alone. It might be a family activity. It might be you, on discipline duty from sun-up to bedtime, with the kids. It may be a clean car. It might just be an afternoon at home playing board games.
Even if I personally know your wife, I don't know what is best for her on this important day, so ASK. It's not impersonal to inquire, it's downright practical! Because once you know what she wants, it is virtually impossible to screw it up...unless you don't follow through. And, I think you are a smart enough guy to know that that would be the end of Father's Day for, say, the rest of your life?)