Mother’s Day is always a bit of a challenge for me, because I know (and I know you know!) that I haven’t always been the Hallmark card mother. And while I know that is true for all of us, I’m the one who remembers the look on my baby’s face the first time I yelled at him, or the time I sent my boy to bed with angry words, or the time they saw me fighting with their dad. Those moments are mine, and they do not fade with time. This is my family and these are my children, and I own these memories.

My sweet boys.

It’s the day after Mother’s Day, and this morning the roses from church and the card from the boys are pushed to the end of the table to make room for breakfast. And we sit, my husband and I, for a few minutes with the coffee and the conversation, until he leaves for the day and I clear his plate and make breakfast for the children.

And then it is time for the bowls and the boys and the morning scripture, and we talk a bit about poor Saul who lost his way. And we smile over David, the youngest son of Jesse, the future king, and I pause for a minute at the  glowing with health description of the boy – glowing with health from his days spent with the sheep and the slingshot and the harp.

And I look around the table at my own boys, growing bigger with each heaping bowl of morning porridge, and I thank God for them and their days with the animals and the fields and the guitars. I thank Him for the boys they are, and the men they are becoming, and I think, I must have done a few things right. Their dad and I, we’re doing our best.

I grab my phone and snap a few pictures until they say enough already! and start acting silly.

And I feel all motherly, in the midst of my messes and failures and mistakes, as I look around my kitchen table on the day after Mother’s Day.