A mother's happiness is like a beacon, lighting up the future but reflected also on the past in the guise of fond memories. ~Honoré de Balzac
I completely believe in creating fond memories for my children. Some might say I'm obsessed with it. My husband and I have held onto family traditions and created new ones with our kids. We plan vacations involving a myriad of locations and activities, both fun and educational. We know the formative time with our kids is finite, and try to squeeze out every moment with them that we can.
Today, I continued the quest for meaningful, memorable experiences for my 15-year-old daughter with a notable outing to the day spa. I'm sure she will remember the soft music, the scented candles, the comfy women-only environment. She will remember being served special cookies, and drinking from a lovely crystal glass. She might even remember the facial, deemed so relaxing she could hardly open her eyes at the conclusion.
But what I think she'll remember for a long time to come is how very unusual and special it was for me to splurge on something so indulgent.
That's all part of the plan, you see. I'm a frugal mom. I believe in everything in moderation, not too much, not too little. Day spas aren't my regular hang out place, and I ration my hairdressing appointments to two per year. Mani/pedis? Rarely. Massage and facials? Hardly ever.
I was near 30 before I had my first pedicure. I've never had fake nails, and haven't yet had a pro dye my hair. I don't understand moms who take their 6 year olds for pedicures and professional haircuts. When my daughter asks if she can get her nails done I say of course, as long as she pays for it. It usually stops right there.
When my girl was six, we were making play doh, baking cookies, taking walks and looking for dogs in the park. We were making happy memories dancing to Raffi, reading books and watching 'The Sound of Music'. The idea of a spa day never even crossed my mind for me, let alone her!
As I reflect on my mommy-daughter day I wonder if we are trying to make memories by growing our kids up too fast? Are we really thinking about what is best for them, or what is convenient for us? Would our daughters really rather sit side by side with us and have their nails done, or have their mommy by their sides doing whatever their imaginations can muster?
And yet I know today will stay with her, not because of the facial, the spa, or the glitz. How do I know it was memory-worthy? Because when I got home, I saw she had posted 'mommy daughter time' as her Facebook status.
With that, her mother's happiness lit up like a beacon, reminding me of all our fond memories and the future yet to come.