Another year has gone by and I find myself facing the same quandary I faced last year. I was hoping somehow this year would be different but, alas, it is not. Many people complain about how fast things are changing I have a complaint that some things do not change at all.
Is it interesting that the things you want to change refuse to do so and the things you want to stay the same never do. I wish somebody would figure out how to reverse this tedious trend of life. I've worked on it but to no success.
What I'm referring to, of course, is the annual Mother's Day card fetish. I'm not sure where this started or why, but I do have my suspicions though. I think we can safely rule out husbands and men as suspects.
I could see a man doing it one year but to do it year after year is not within the scope of a man's ability. If a man does something one time and it is successful he never chances doing it the second time when it may be a failure.
Now we have on our hands tremendous pressure to purchase a yearly Mother's Day card. When it comes to card buying, I simply do not know where to go. Oh, I know where to find them; I just don't know which one to buy.
If it was up to me, and let me point out very quickly it's not, I would have one card for sale each year. Perhaps I would change the card each year and maybe write something different in it. How many ways can you say "Happy Mother's Day?"
To be efficient the choice would only be one Mother's Day card per year.
As it stands (and I wish it would sit down and rest for a while), there are more Mother's Day cards than stars in the heavens. It is virtually impossible to pick out the right Mother's Day card. Personally, I don't keep up with the latest trends in this regard and therefore I am at quite a disadvantage.
One year I tried to remedy my Mother's Day card-buying dilemma by purchasing a box of 50 cards that were on sale right after Mother's Day. I thought I had hit the mother lode, so to speak.
With this purchase, I had enough Mother's Day cards to last my entire life. Unless, of course, I live to be 129. This lasted for two years.
The first year I presented my Mother's Day card to my wife and she gave me all kinds of smiles and hugs. I was relieved to have solved a big problem in my home. I now could rest and concentrate on solving other problems in my life, of which there are many.
It was the second year that kicked me in the teeth.
As usual, that year, I presented my wife with her Mother's Day card. And believe me, I was not fully prepared for the response I received. I was expecting smiles and hugs like the year before. What I got was a glare and a shrug.
She looked at me and said something I shall never forget. "Isn't this the same card you gave me last year?"
How do wives remember these things? The only reason I knew it was the same card as last year is I had many more just like it in the box it came from.
Obviously, good protocol rules out giving the same card two years in a row. Who knew? I didn't.
To have a problem unsolved is a very nerve-racking experience, to be sure. Now I must go back and start the whole Mother's Day card buying process over again.
This brings me to the second part of my quandary.
When did it become necessary for husbands to buy their wives Mother's Day cards?
Sure, she washes my clothes, cooks my meals and bosses me around. But she still is not my mother.
It starts out rather innocently enough as most things do. But then, in my opinion, it gets out of hand.
When the children start coming into the home it is quite natural, because they're too young to make such important decisions, for the father to buy the Mother's Day card on behalf of the children.
I still remember that first Mother's Day card. Our first baby was only seven months old and had no idea what was going on in the world or even in the home.
I gave my wife her first Mother's Day card. She was so excited. And because she was excited, so was I. This is where the whole nonsense starts.
What I want to know is when do husbands stop buying Mother's Day cards for their wives? Looking back over my experience, I can see no way where I can opt out of this annual event.
The last child in our home left more than 10 years ago and still I find myself under the awesome pressure of purchasing a Mother's Day card for my wife. When do the children take control of this yearly responsibility?
In spite of my quandary, it is important to honor both fathers and mothers.
"Honour thy father and mother;" which is the first commandment with promise; "That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth." (Ephesians 6:2-3 KJV.)
Would anybody want to buy a box of 48 Mother's Day cards, cheap?
James L. Snyder is an award winning author and popular columnist living with his wife, Martha, in Ocala, Florida and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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