Several years ago a friend told me about "Burnt Toast" and how she didn't want to live her life getting "Burnt Toast." I didn't know what she was talking about. She explained that women, mothers in particular, live their entire life giving the best of themselves and settling for the bad parts, or whatever remains.
Burnt Toast, the Theory
The "Burnt Toast" theory, if you will, is that a woman will toast bread in the morning for her spouse and kids, look for the blackest piece and keep that piece for herself. She will give the best pieces to her husband and kids. And all her life she will eat "Burnt Toast," on every level: The overcooked chicken, the used item of clothing, the economical car, the most uncomfortable chair, and so on.
I noticed this with my boyfriend and friends I have over. I keep the burnt tortilla, the bowl of popcorn that has more kernels & less "pop," and will take my coffee black if we run low on creamer. I see this as good and bad. These actions are instilled in women; we want to please, we want the ones we love to have the best. It's how we show love. The bad is that this can go to the extremes, that it can go unappreciated, and overlooked. Or, to the point where the giver is not taking care of themselves. As the receiver, you may never notice these tokens of love being silently decided in your Mom or spouse's head.
Mom's Deserve More
Mom's deserve more than Burnt Toast. They also deserve more than flowers. They deserve quality time, tenderness, and a listening ear - something that I admittedly need to work on. The photo below captures a bit of "good toast" that I was able to give back. I have a fear of drowning. My Mother does not. For my birthday, many years ago, she gave me a White Water Rafting Day. It was something she had always wanted to do. It definitely was a gift with her in mind.
I rafted along, fearful, resigning to the fact that I was going to drown on my birthday. But I had to do it, because I knew how much she dreamed of rafting down the American River with the gushing white water. I did not drown. I did get a black eye though; got hit with an ore up side the head - wish I had a picture of that! Looking back, it was worth the bruising. She had a great time and wished it had been a little longer, a little whiter (meaning, more dangerous waters). I'll allow her to give this cool gift to someone other than me next time.
If you are a Mother you can probably fill an encyclopedia set (remember those) of what you have sacrificed for your family. My Mom (and Dad) sacrificed tons - probably things I'm not even aware of.
As Mother's Day approaches, think about the times your Mom ate "Burnt Toast" for you. I'd love to hear about them!