My First Mother's Day and Mother's Day Misadventures

What did my hands do before they held this child?
What did I think about, worry about, dream about?
What things touched my heart before I saw this child's smile,
before I heard this child's cry,
before I felt this incredible bond?
Who was I before I became this child's mother?
Somehow, now, I can't remember.

I never knew how much it would mean to celebrate the fact that I am a mother.....

Before I was a Mom, I never tripped over the millions of toys that cover our living room floor. I never made up words to a lullaby, or danced around crazily, just to evoke a sweet baby giggle. I never worried about whether the corners of my furniture were dangerously sharp, or whether or not my house plants were poisonous. I never thought twice about immunizations.

Before I was a mom, I hadn't been pooped on, or chewed on.  I had control of my mind and my thoughts. I didn't worry about much. I slept all night, every night.

Before I was a mom, I never held a sleeping baby just because I didn't want to put him down. I never looked into teary eyes, and cried my own tears. I never got gloriously happy over a toothless grin.

Before I was a mom, I never realized how fully someone could depend on me. I didn't know the feeling of having my own heart beat outside of my body. I didn't know the strength of the bond between a mother and her child.

Before I was a mom, I never imagined that something so small could fill my heart so fully with love and happiness.

This weekend I celebrated my very first Mother's Day, and it was truly all I had hoped it would be....and probably a little bit more.  I honestly believe that I have one of the most thoughtful husbands in the entire world, and as usual, he helped to make mine & Hudson's special day absolutely amazing.

On Saturday, I was greeted with a beautiful bouquet of yellow, orange, and pink tulips. They are just gorgeous! I also received Mother's Day cards from all my favorite people....my sweet parents, my wonderful cousin Summer and her husband Brad, and my fabulous best friend Lisa and her husband Andrew. Later that night, Will couldn't wait to give me my Mother's Day gift. After he mentioned a present, of course I wanted it right then! He got up, shuffled around, and he and Hudson presented me with a fabulous package, wrapped in silver with a pretty pink bow. As soon as I saw the silver wrapping, I knew that it was from Mefford's Jewelers...our favorite local jewelry store. I tore open the paper, and found the sweetest, most lovely surprise: a charm bracelet, with two dangling charms; one was a little boy's silhouette, engraved with 'Hudson Gregory' on one side, and his birthdate, '8-12-09', on the other. The second charm was round with my initials, 'ANB', scripted on the front, and the date of my first Mother's Day, 'May 9, 2010' on the back. I am truly blessed with the most loving husband...I don't know many men who could pick out such a meaningful gift all by themselves! Hudson didn't know much about why I was opening a gift, or why I was raving about the beautiful tulips, but he gave me his very own special gift-- beginning Saturday morning, he constantly repeated "Mama" from sun up to sun down, and then all over again on Sunday. How appropriate!

Sunday morning, I woke up after snuggling with my little angel, to my sweet Will placing Mother's Day cards on the bed. He always picks out the most precious cards, and I adored these, especially the touching inscriptions written inside.

After a relaxing morning, the three of us readied ourselves for a little adventure that Will had planned. Luckily, our home is close to so many wonderful places....and on this Mother's Day, Will chose to drive us down the Natchez Trace, with the hopes of seeing the hundreds of hummingbirds that visit a site called Rock Spring. The area is situated just off the Trace, north of the Tennessee River. Basically, it consists of a nature trail that follows Colbert Creek to the natural Rock Spring. We had visited this trail twice together before Hudson was born. It's visually astounding with blooming wildflowers, babbling creek water, and beautiful wildlife. The last time we visited, we happened upon a snake, that was relaxing in the cool Spring water, so we were definitely on the lookout for creepy crawlies during our stroll. As I mentioned earlier, we were looking for the hummingbirds that frequent the area. After we arrived, we realized that the tiny little birds visit the Rock Spring in the Fall, rather than the Spring. The edges of the wetland hold an abundance of orange jewelweed, which blooms in the Autumn months and attracts hundreds of Ruby-throated Hummingbirds. Will had seen the hummingbirds as a child, and he's been trying for years to show them to me.  Although we understood that we wouldn't be catching a glimpse of the tiny, almost magical, birds, we thought we'd go ahead and walk to the Spring. 

Within the first few minutes of walking the trail, we happened upon the stepping stones that cross the creek. Now, the stones are large in size, and not to far apart, but as expected the trek across the rocks was precarious for me, as I had once again worn the wrong choice of shoes. As I slowly teetered across, Will and Hudson (nestled comfortably in his Baby Bjorn) followed behind.  As I got to the last stone, a glimmer of something caught my eye from below. I stopped, peered down, and there, about 5 inches below the stepping stone on which I was standing, was a slimy snake, basking in the sun as it lay coiled on a rock. Of course, I was frightened, but feeling adventurous, I told Will and Hudson to stay where they were....I wanted to photograph the scaly serpent! I quickly reached for my camera, which hung securely around my neck, and I nimbly moved my fingers to remove the lens cover. Before I could blink, the lens cover went flying from my grasp. Down, down, down. Until it landed on the very same rock that the snake was streched out upon. I turned to look at Will. He was just shaking his head. Now what?

I immediately removed Hudson from the cozy confines of the Bjorn, and took him into my arms as we stood safely on the ground, a good ten feet from the snake. Will tried to think of a way to rescue my lens cover. I saw him bend down, and pick up a rock. Before I could utter my feelings about how he probably should avoid making a snake mad, he had hoisted it through the air, directly towards the snake. He missed. He tried again. The snake wasn't moving, though projectile rocks were flying to his left and right. I quietly asked Will if the snake was dead. He muttered a "no", and I just stood back and kept my mouth shut. Poor Will....I always seem to get us into some kind of mess.  After ten minutes of berating the snake's immediate area with rocks, which never quite made contact, I told Will we needed another plan of action. I suggested that he pick up the long stick that was laying on the ground, near my high heeled foot. He did, and proceed to bravely rake the snake into the water....and believe me, that nasty thing was very much alive. I'm shivering just thinking about it's little snake head jittering around, and how it swiftly swam away through the cold, blue creek water. Then my heroic hubby reached down with his two nervous fingers, and pulled out that camera lid, quicker than a lightning strike.  As I was on the verge of tears over my fear of snakes, I urged Will to point us in the direction of our car. This Mother's Day Misadventure was a bit too much for me!
The Natchez Trace endeavor and all of the gifts were so wonderful, but when it comes right down to it, I am just so happy to be a Mom. Every night when little Hudson touches my face before drifting off to sleep, I thank God for letting me be his Mommy. We have been together for 9 months now, and I am so thankful for each moment I have spent with him. Sometimes I can't believe he is the same tiny baby who was placed in my arms on that glorious day last August.

Thank you to Mom, Dad, Summer, Brad, Lisa, and Andrew for sending the sweet cards....it meant so much that you all remembered my special day! Lots of love to all of you!

Thank you Hudson and Daddy for everything! I had the most incredible 1st Mother's Day. I love you both with all of my heart.

{My 1st Mother's Day}

{love my little buddy}


{beginning an adventure}

{Rock Spring Fun}

{silly Daddy}

{these are not hiking shoes}


{little baby adventurer}

{stepping stones}

{Colbert Creek}


{Will throwing rocks at the snake}

{we are scared!}

{my hero}

{let's go home}

{natural dam, made by beavers}


{a red fox watches us}

{I had the best day.}


abehel said...

Ashley! Can't believe you stopped to take a picture of that snake! Although it was an awesome picture. You had a wonderful reason to celebrate, Hudson is so precious! Please wear tennis shoes or boots next time you hike.

Summer T said...

Did my mom just use the word awesome to describe a picture?

I'm so glad you had the best 1st mother's day. Of course you should have known we wouldn't forget to commemorate that with a card!

I agree with mom. I think you need to start making better shoe choices when going around outside. :) Please choose appropriately when coming to the lake :)

joetroyer said...

Its a nice picture .I really like your picture have a fun.