Mother's Day Gifts, Forward and Back - May 2, 2024 | Kids Out and About Westchester <

Mother's Day Gifts, Forward and Back

May 2, 2024

Debra Ross

If I could have anything in the universe as a Mother's Day gift from my two kids, I know exactly what those two things would be. On the plus side: It would take only 10 seconds, max, per kid. On the minus side: It involves superpowers.

I'd ask my first child for a time machine to the past. I'd duck in for a second or two at crucial points in her and her sister's lives when I made my biggest mistakes—when I said something, did something, forgot something. I'd get there in the few seconds before those moments burned themselves into my brain as my most piercing regrets, change their trajectory 180 degrees, and duck out before anyone even noticed that the mom in the scenario had temporarily transformed into someone older, wiser, and a little more weather-worn.

I'd ask my second child for a telescope to the future. See, I desperately want to know that it all turns out okay. I'd focus in to when they're, say, 40. Five seconds of reassurance per kid to see that they end up happy, healthy, and independent—that's all I'd need to set me up with confidence for the rest of my life.

We can't have the impossible, of course, but I've realized we can give ourselves versions of those gifts that are guaranteed to be useful: We can create a sort of time machine in our very own heads, mentally flying back through time to reassure our past selves that we really did learn from those mistakes. And then we can telescope to next Sunday's future and see ourselves living fully in the present of whatever gift Mother's Day brings, whether that's homemade jewelry or mugs with crayon drawings or sticky kisses, or even just a few moments of calm before the next storm.