Get stories and expert advice on all things related to college and parenting.
Dear College Senior: You Don't Have to Have Everything Figured OutElizabeth Spencer
Mother’s Day will be here pretty soon. Although I’ve lost track of the days (and even months), I know it’s coming because I’m starting to get emails suggesting gifts I might want.
Like everything else, Mother’s Day is going to look different this year. I didn’t expect to have my youngest home from college — he was supposed to be in the middle of final exams. I thought my middle son would be around but he’s currently quarantining with his girlfriend in Michigan.
Neither my mom nor my mother-in-law will be back from Florida. For the first time ever, they will both be alone for Mother’s Day which I know will be difficult for them.
There won’t be brunch or dinner out at my favorite restaurant.
Back to the emails. The gift suggestions don’t even come close to what I really want this year. So here’s a little note to my family on how they can help me have a special day.
Since I’m not really changing it up with my wardrobe these days, I don’t want or need clothes. Okay, another pair of sweatpants or leggings might not be a bad idea since I’ve been living in the ones I already own and they have seen better days. Pre-corona days. And maybe some new socks.
I ordered a few candles recently so I’m good as far as that goes. Spa gift cards would probably not be redeemable for a long while so that’s out.
Now that I’ve covered the stuff I don’t want here are a few things I would like this year.
Help around the house. Like I want a complete day off from cooking and cleaning and laundry. I don’t want to even think about food. Not how we are getting it or preparing it. Just let me know when it’s time for me to eat and I will magically appear. And after I’m done eating, I don’t want to clean it up.
If it’s a nice day, I’d like us all to take a walk together. Being cooped up inside during this very rainy season has been hard. And if it’s not a nice day I will take a rain check on that walk. Extra points for conversation that doesn’t include how sad we are about the lack of sports right now.
I want us to watch something on TV and I get to choose. Even if it’s “Say Yes to the Dress.” (Which it won’t be, but I want you to be prepared.) And you don’t get to go to your rooms/office if you don’t like my choice. Even though we’ve been in the same house, I’ve been lonely and would like for us to spend some quality time together.
A homemade gift. They are are going to make a huge comeback this year. I used to love the gifts you kids made me at school — I even still have many of them. Since you won’t be able to get to a card store, perhaps you could make me a card. Creativity and effort count more than ever this year.
I want lots and lots of hugs. We’ve been trying to give each other personal space but at this point I just want to feel the love. Even if you wear a mask. And for my child who won’t be with me, I want to feel the love through FaceTime or Zoom. A text isn’t going to cut it.
I don’t want to hear any complaints for the entire day. Just appreciation and acknowledgment for how I’ve tried to keep you comfortable and safe during this pandemic.
Something blooming and colorful. When it’s safe to go to the nursery, I’d like some flowers for the pots on our porch and front beds. Flowers always cheer me up and somehow make things seem more hopeful. And hope is a really good thing right now.
I would like for all of our lives to get back to some semblance of normalcy. But since that’s not in your control, I will be content with the things you can do. Thank you so much in advance for helping me have an extra special day.
So, that’s my wish list. You probably have a few things on your lists as well. Don’t be shy about letting your family know what they can do to help you have a special day. Between worrying and taking care of everyone, you’ve earned it.
It’s time to celebrate with the perfect gift for your new grad!