Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Monday, May 15, 2006

On Moms

Okay, so Mother’s day was yesterday, and once again, I was surprised by how many women actively do not like Mother’s Day. The common complaint seems to be that mothers are placed on an impossibly tall pedestal and most women come home from church feeling like they can never measure up. Especially among writers, moms worry they are spending too much time writing and not enough time cleaning, or cooking, or crafting, or whatever.

These are my thoughts on the subject, as someone who has never been a mom and never will be unless science changes dramatically in the next five years. Nah, not even then.

First of all, who came up with the crazy idea that scriptural mothers were perfect? Take the prodigal son for instance. He takes the money and runs to live a riotous life. Now, I’m sure Mom missed him and hoped he would turn his life around. But in the mean time I’ll bet she converted his bedroom into a very nice sewing room. Then he comes home and just expects to go back to mooching off his parents. Dad says, “Kill the fatted calf, put a ring on his finger, give him a fine cloak.” Who has to search through the couch cushions for another ring? Who has to cook the fatted calf, and clean up the fat? Does Dad think there are clean cloaks just hanging around the closet pressed and ready to wear? Of course Mom welcomed him back, but a little notice would have been nice.

Then there are the stripling warriors. Yes their mothers taught them faith. But does that mean their moms were perfect? How do you think these young men got so good at sword fighting when their parents had buried all the weapons? The kids were running around the house smacking each other with tree branches and butter knives all day, while mom was working on a particular plot twist. And they hadn’t even cleaned under their finger nails or scrubbed behind their ears when they showed up at Helaman’s house.

And who can anyone really blame Nephi’s mother for complaining when Dad sent the boys back to Jerusalem? Fathers always think their boys need to be toughened up. But sometimes moms just want their babies to be safe. She loved her boys and she was worried about them. Why couldn’t Lehi have sent a courier?

As a son, I can tell all you Moms that your children will not remember whether the toilets were always clean or whether you wore make-up to the grocery store. They won’t remember whether you served two helping of vegetables with every meal or dusted the top of the book shelf. They won’t care if you didn’t make holiday doilies at Enrichment Night or whether or not you could toll paint or arrange dried flowers.

What they will remember is how much you told them you loved them. How many times you kissed them in front of their friends (embarrassing the crap out of them but secretly pleasing them anyway.) They will remember the times you listened when they got turned down by the girl they asked to the prom. They will remember the time you tried to play baseball with them and accidentally broke the sliding glass door. They will remember how you sat on the side of their bed at the end of a really lousy day for them and just listened.
And most of all they will remember if you were happy. Because when Mom is happy, home is a happy place to be. So to paraphrase the song little, stop worrying about not being the perfect mom and be a happy mom.


At 5/16/2006 12:49 AM, Blogger Mean Aunt said...

I now have this image of the stripling warriors as stripling (what does that mean?) boys whacking each other with sticks while their mothers are telling them to knock it off.

At 5/16/2006 10:14 PM, Blogger Sweebler said...

Thanks for the Striping Warrior imagery. It undoubtedly happened that way!

At 5/17/2006 11:55 AM, Blogger Darvell Hunt said...

Just to let you guys know, my Mom passed this morning just after six o'clock. I mentioned her on this blog before so I thought I would follow up. She lasted four weeks after coming home from the hospital with cancer, when the doctors gave her only five days. It's comforting to know that it wasn't unexpected and that she was able to make to mother's day and say goodbye to everyone she loved.

Thanks for listening.


At 5/17/2006 6:02 PM, Blogger Stephanie Black said...

Darvell, I'm so sorry to hear about your mother's passing.

At 5/18/2006 11:23 PM, Blogger Darvell Hunt said...

Thanks, Stephanie. Funeral services will be next Wednesday. You can find her obituary (which I wrote, by the way, and which also has a few problems in it that I'd fix if I could, but it's already in print--D'oh) at:

You can also sign the guestbook and leave comments there.



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