Sunday, May 13, 2012
HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY. WHERE IT ALL STARTS.
Today we held a bridal shower for Liz, my future daughter-in-law, at our Sandy Point beach house. It was a champagne brunch for twenty-four women and the day was sunny and warm. Guests were seated at decorated tables on the water side patio, and garlands of pink flowers with white fairy lights festooned the walls above the buffet, which was prepared by another daughter-in-law, Jackie.
Presents were opened with the expected oohs and aahs, and daughter Jonelle busily made a bouquet from all the ribbons. Click on the words "made a bouquet" to learn about this and other bridal traditions. Because of time honored stories, Liz was careful about unwrapping the presents, since the number of ribbons broken are supposed to predict how many children the future bride will have. And of course jokes were made about how many would be acceptable with respect to future motherhood.
Typical shower games were played, but one activity was worth sharing. The women were asked to share advice for the new bride on 3 x 5 cards. Here were a few of those "words of wisdom."
1. Always make up and never go to bed mad.
2. The best advice is to love, nourish and have peace.
3. Laugh it off.
4. Take 3 deep breaths and shake off the small stuff...and remember, it is mostly SMALL stuff.
5. Communication and compromise are important.
6. Don't sweat the small stuff (toilet seats, clothes on the floor, etc.)
7. You catch more bears with honey than you do with vinegar.
8. You trained for a wonderful career. Don't let anyone talk you out of it. Always be able to work, to be independent, and to have your own money to spend.
9. Have unconditional love, fight fair, and always make up after.
10. Develop special hobbies and adventures that are shared together exclusively. This will bond your relationship with each other and your shared memories will last forever.
11. Create your own family traditions.
12. Promise to be kind to everyone you meet and know.
13. Act like your husband is always right, then do it your way when he is not looking.
14. Having two cars and two TVs is a good thing.
15. During the hard times (fights) pause and remember how rare true love is and how blessed you are to have it, then tell each other you love them. Don't go to bed angry.
16. Keep your guy on a short (yet fashionable leash).
We all smiled knowingly at each other as the cards were read and I wondered how many felt as I did - that being a woman is pretty special. I don't think men spend much time listening to advice from their buddies unless it has to do with getting certain basic needs met. On the other hand we, the so called weaker sex, shaped by the journeys of those who went before, can spend hours talking about life's problems, solutions, second guessing, multi-tasking, and handling whatever life throws our way. I think we are wise, strong, clever, resourceful and resilient. Like the song lyrics from The Flower Drum musical say, "I enjoy being a girl."
Many of us at the shower were mothers, which adds additional depth to the female psyche. For those and for mothers across the world I say Happy Mother's Day. May you enjoy the day, knowing that your children, whether near or far, will have you in their thoughts.