This Sunday, May 12, is Mother’s Day, and I’m looking forward to spending the day relaxing with my family.
We have learned to keep things simple. We’ve tried going out to eat, but a meal at a crowded restaurant always seems to take up half the afternoon.
One year my husband bought me a hammock that could be strung between two trees. He secured it in just the right spot and invited me to try it out, so I did.
My thoughts were filled with how wonderful it felt to have the sunshine streaming on my face while I read a delightful book.
Then I saw our kids running straight at me. They were younger then, probably in elementary school, so they were much smaller than they are now.
Still, the hammock didn’t know what hit it when both of them jumped in on top of Mom to help me enjoy my rest time.
I heard something snap and the next thing I knew, my back hit the ground. All three of us yelled out in shock.
I can still feel the pain in my back caused by that impact.
Or, maybe that feeling is from the mishap that occurred last weekend.
As a high school English teacher, I am constantly grading papers, and this time of year is especially busy. Yet I didn’t want to miss out on the sunshine of last weekend, so I took a stack of papers, a tall glass of ice water and a bowl of popcorn out on our deck. I was especially looking forward to the popcorn. Instead of butter, this popcorn was sprinkled with Old Bay.
My plans included settling in on our deck swing — which just happened to be a Mother’s Day gift a few years ago — and grading papers all afternoon. Placing my ice water on the stand beside the swing and my papers on one side of the swing, I sat down on the other side with the bowl of popcorn. Then I heard a ripping sound and felt my bottom hit the deck. The popcorn flew everywhere, my legs went straight up in the air and my body assumed the shape of a “V.” I screamed. My daughter looked over in shock. My husband peered through the sliding glass doors to see what had happened. Our dogs started barking and came running.
The canvas on the swing had ripped apart at the seam. Being out in the elements all winter had been too much for the swing. My daughter and her friends had been outside reading on it the day before. I’m thankful it didn’t rip then and cause one of them to get hurt.
As it turned out, I was stunned and a little sore from the impact, but rather amused that this had happened with yet another Mother’s Day gift.
My husband and daughter waited to see if I would laugh. I did, after I overcame the initial feeling of shock. Then they laughed, too.
At least their Mother’s Day gifts add a little excitement to our lives.
Lisa Tedrick Prejean writes a weekly column for The Herald-Mail’s Family page. Send email to her at firstname.lastname@example.org.