The date hadn't mattered so much as the occasion. Last year, as I had before and did again this year, I cooked for our families for Mother's Day. But last year, I was worried. I hadn't seen my father since my niece's first birthday, and while I hadn't disguised my newly-budding body, I'd done nothing to draw it any notice. And so, when on Mother's Day the appointed hour came, it turns out the person to break things to him was not me. No, compounding my many failures as a child, my mother told him.
I've said before that the path to this point has been marked by challenges, but that almost none were the ones I expected. And that's true: while I was always the odd child, it felt like if anything the amount of family strife I experienced had marginally decreased in that year. But that's not my point. I've read, over the past days, tales of Mother's Day. Even as I read the good stories, I digested the admonishments from some at others who for whatever reasons would not or could not celebrate their relationships with their own mother, interspersed with other stories of what those reasons were.
For me, it comes to this. When I explained to her the journey I am undertaking, I'm certain she didn't fully understand. In spite of that, when I faltered at finding a way to express to my father why I never managed to be the son I felt he expected, she did. She stepped in, and cleaned up my mess.
Like a mother.