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Jennifer Koppelman Hutt Headshot

Happy Mother's Day -- I Quit!

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I'm not sure when it happened for the first time, but lately, I'd say two mornings a week and some evenings, too, I announce to my teenage son and preteen daughter, "I quit!"

I'm not referring to my employment... Oh no, I love that! I am referring to being their mother, which I also love. But some days, weeks, nights and months they make me crazy and make me want to run away to ANYWHERE!

And I know I'm not alone in this feeling. In fact, earlier today, my sister called and suggested we run away for Mother's Day (she's got three teenagers)!

We love our babies. A lot. Both my sister and I would shrivel up and die were the unthinkable to happen. Bleh. I'm nauseated just by that last sentence.

But no one can rile us up more than our kids. No one can bring us to the brink of rage and right back to love like our kids.

No one can make us want to pull both our hair out and theirs like our kids.

And isn't this the great omission of mommyhood?! Mixed with that incredible joy, laughter and undying love can also exist intense anger and intolerance. Oh and crippling anxiety over the well-being of the babies. Though they slept through the night at the end of year one, I didn't
sleep through the night until my kids were 10 and 12!

And that adage "Youre only as happy as your unhappiest child..." is so true -- but compound that by adding "and you'll be blaming yourself forany discomfort that child is having..."

My sister can suggest we run away for a day. And I can talk her off the ledge while she does the same for me because our mother isn't here anymore. She died almost four years ago, and Mother's Day has an entirely different meaning and feeling for us now.

When we lose our mother, we lose our anchor, our judge, our jury, our best friend, our mentor, our mommy. And certain days, like her birthday and Mother's Day, highlight that
absence just a little too much for me to bear.

Still, we will embrace Mother's Day as we should -- for our children. I've let them know in advance I'd like cupcakes and a new iPod with a speaker dock. Oh, and I'd like no fighting, no screaming, early bedtime and no complaints.

At least I'm guaranteed to get an iPod.