Here's how Irish I am. As we were driving to church this morning, I realized it was the middle of March and I had been hearing the radio commercials for green beer and specials on Irish whiskey all week and it must be getting close to St. Patrick's day. Suddenly it dawned on me that TODAY might be St. Patrick's Day. So I pulled out my phone, looked at the date (March 16) and declared, "Yes, today is St. Patrick's Day."
My 5-year old quickly asked, "What's Pat Satrick's Day?"
"Well, it's when....um...." Good question.
"It's the day we celebrate St. Patrick....and wear green...and stuff." That was the best I could do. I sincerely apologize to Irish folk everywhere. I know nothing of St. Patrick's day other than the mandatory green clothing requirement and free-flowing alcohol.
St. Patrick's day also happens to be the anniversary of my second first date with my husband. We dated in high school, but then lost touch and reconnected in 2002. He came to visit me over St. Patrick's day weekend when I was living in Oregon. We decided to go out for a drink and play darts at an Irish pub. Turns out the pub was actually British. But obviously the date went well in spite of our horrible attention to detail when celebrating international drinking holidays.
Ironically I looked around the car and realized that everyone was, in fact, wearing green this morning(aside from my husband, so we didn't really go into explaining the whole pinching tradition to the kids). Well perfect. We were festive without even trying. I was feeling pretty smug actually. I had managed to get my family dressed in appropriate St. Patrick's day attire without even knowing it. It was like a free mommy win! After all the mini failures of motherhood.....the times I've forgotten to pack snacks, or dressed them in jeans when it ended up being 90 degrees, or forgotten to RSVP for a birthday party, this free pass felt good.
Sometimes you have to savor the small victories.
Although there were shamrock cookies served at the coffee hour after church, I did notice that not many others were wearing green. The kids weren't running around pinching each other. Nobody was humming Irish drinking songs or wearing little shamrock pins. Hmmm. I began to doubt my mommy intuition. Is the 16th really St. Patrick's Day? Or did I get the date wrong? Was my mini mommy victory all just a sorry illusion?
On the ride home I had to do a quick fact-check because I was beginning to remember that maybe St. Patrick's day was the 17th of March. Lo and behold, Google confirmed my fear. I was sorely mistaken. Pretty sure my long lost Irish relatives were turning over in their graves all morning. For those that may be afraid they missed it, today is NOT the day. So wear green tomorrow. Monday, March 17th.
As I laughed and explained to my daughter that St. Patrick's day was actually tomorrow, she replied without missing a beat, "That's ok mommy. I have another green dress. With glitter."
Seems like she has already mastered the finer points of celebrating this important holiday. Let's just hope the she doesn't embrace the Irish whiskey tradition anytime soon.