Mother’s Day cards have no rhymes for ‘episiotomy’

(With today being Mother’s Day, I felt it appropriate to skip this week’s edition of “Post Traumatic Sunday” and, instead, post a different kind of flashback to say Thank You to all the mothers who sacrifice so much each day, many of whom still have their own kind of flashbacks whenever they hear the words “breast pump”…)

image For many of you, Mother’s Day means sending a flowery card that says all the wonderful things you’d say if only you had a thesaurus and someone from Hallmark breathing down your neck. The truth is, the meaning of Mother’s Day has been lost over the years thanks to stupid greeting cards filled with heartfelt phrases like:

If your love was an ocean, you would’ve drowned me as a child.
When I think of love, I think of you. Because of this, you have no grandchildren.
With every smile, I remember a special moment that will never ever be forgotten — Happy belated Mother’s Day!

The true meaning of Mother’s Day, as any mother will tell you, has absolutely nothing to do with flowery cards or fond memories — and everything to do with sacrifice. That’s right. You want to let Mom know you really care? Forget about comparing her to “a beautiful rose laden with thorns of caring,” and remember all the stuff she endured for you even before you HAD a memory. If you’re not sure where to begin, I have two words for you: Breast Pump.

And remember that breast pumping came after nine months of losing control over most of her bodily functions, including — but not limited to — food cravings. These cravings came as a direct result of YOUR needs inside the womb, even though, in many cases, those needs could gag a contestant on Dumpster Diver.

But she did it anyway, in spite of the fact that as you were developing and shaping, so was she: Developing swollen feet the size of couch cushions, and taking the shape of a giant Weeble capable of destroying Tokyo. Keep in mind that during this process, she was still merrily preparing for your arrival by hanging borders, assembling mobiles, making trips to the doctor, all while visiting the bathroom once every three minutes.

Then finally, to show your appreciation upon arriving into the world, you treat her to an episiotomy.

Chances are, you won’t find any of this in a greeting card. Mainly because there are very few phrases that rhyme with “episiotomy.” Although “The things you taught-a me since your episiotomy” has potential.

That’s why I’m mentioning it here, so that hopefully, someone, somewhere, will read this and offer me a job at Hallmark.

Okay, that’s only part of the reason.

The main reason is to say “Thank You” to all you wonderful mothers out there, especially those who are celebrating their very first Mother’s Day this year.

You know who you are.

And if you don’t, try turning down that breast pump a notch or two.

(Ned Hickson is a syndicated columnist with News Media Corporation. His first book, Humor at the Speed of Life, is available from Port Hole Publications, or Barnes & Noble.)

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Ned's Blog

I was a journalist, humor columnist, writer and editor at Siuslaw News for 23 years. The next chapter in my own writer’s journey is helping other writers prepare their manuscript for the road ahead. I'm married to the perfect woman, have four great kids, and a tenuous grip on my sanity...

35 thoughts on “Mother’s Day cards have no rhymes for ‘episiotomy’”

  1. Hilarious and heartfelt, Ned. Loved that card up top there.

    I am well acquainted with that damn breast pump. Could build one from paperclips, cardboard tubing and a Timex watch right now. With my left hand. The freezer bags, the bottle set up, the tear down and re-attachments. Knowing what can hit the dishwasher and what can’t. I’m a pro there. As far as a dude can be a pro in that department.

    As for the cravings – my wife went through 2-3 watermelons a week. Which means I went through them, as I was the one cutting and refrigerating them. My knife still quivers when it sees watermelon come into the house.

    Thanks for this – and a Happy Mother’s Day to all the fine mommas reading 🙂


    1. *high-five*
      Like you, I was the master of the breast-pump assembly, breakdown, clean-up and rotation. I was a chef then, so I actually put Day-Dots (colored stickers with days of the week on them) to ensure the proper rotation. Yeah, kind of weird. But then again, neither of our kids ever ended up trying to suck sour cream through a rubber nipple.

      And I can’t stand watermelon, so even I’m quivering right now.

  2. My eyes leaked this morning when I got a text from my step-daughter wishing me a Happy Mother’s Day. This was a first for me and honestly not something I thought I’d ever “hear” being that I have no actual children nor ever plan to. She touched my heart today.

    So, thanks to those who pumped their big boobies and suffered 9 months of hell but also thanks to those who didn’t and still step up to guide and nurture and be there for children who aren’t technically their own.

  3. I seriously try not to remember the episiotomy, the over 30 stitches for each of my lovely three children. On a good note, since two of them are home, I worked them to the bone today. They painted all the very large garden boxes they constructed along with their day, then moved them to the garden area, and started filling them with dirt, lots of dirt. If that wasn’t enough, the eldest did her own laundry & hung it on the line, the teenage boy took the dogs to the dog park and tomorrow the teenage boy will dust & vacuum because he is stealing my living room to have a Godzilla marathon with his friends. Definitely worth the stitches & not being able to sit for weeks. 🙂

    1. Good for you, Catherine! That sounds like the first of many stitches-worth of payback 😉

      And it does my heart good to know kids are still watching Godzilla, which was my FAVORITE as a kid. I bet they’re excited about the new Godzilla movies coming out this month! Just saw the trailer — it looks fantastic!

        1. The dubbed Japanese ones were the best! Still, my favorite of all time was War of the Gargantuas. If he hasn’t seen that one, it’s worth tracking down.

  4. I am going to print this out and give it to my children. You know, as soon as they are old enough to understand what an episiotomy is without dying of embarrassment.

  5. I always like to jump onto my mother’s bed and ask before all else on mother’s day “Before we begin today’s ritual… are you really my mother? Because let’s be honest, we only share the nose…” which she always laughs hysterically to. But one year I did manage to catch her off guard with our our blood results.

  6. When my sister invited me to witness my nephew’s miraculous arrival back in 1998, I was 27 and had never heard the word “episiotomy.” When I saw the doctor bust out a pair of scissors, I still didn’t know the procedure had a name, but I already knew it had a synonym: contraception. Moms amaze me.

  7. Thanks! But you forgot one of the biggies- morning sickness! Or in my case, the all day sickness that lasted into my fourth month (unlike my sister in law who was sick through her entire two pregnancies). My C-section scar still acts up if I’m on my feet for too many hours in a row. It is nice to be recognized for all the sacrifices, especially when one has a kiddo that requires being a special mom for all of his special needs. And the cool thing about having a preemie is the industrial breast pump that I got to rent for cheap. It was amazing.

    1. I’m not sure how I overlooked those things! I remember I couldn’t have coffee at home in the morning for six months because the smell made my ex-wife sick. And for some reason tarragon still makes her want to vomit. Though I poked fun in my post, I am truly thankful for all that mothers due to bring us into the world, and keep us her feeling loved.

      Thank you for all you do 😉

  8. OMG…if Hallmark picks you up on their payroll PLEASE send my family there. Meanwhile I’ll be thinking of words that rhyme with episiotomy and sleep deprivation.

No one is watching, I swear...

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