Tatiana Tomljanovic is a mother and local writer who wanted to share a Mother’s Day story with others.
Armed with her “good” camera and the excessive pride that comes from spending too much time looking at candy-coloured tulip fields on Instagram, Langley’s Tatiana Tomljanovic set forth – her preschooler kids in tow – to a field in Abbotsford on Mother’s Day 2020.
It had been raining non-stop for the previous two weeks, Mom recounted.
“We had our rain boots. We had our rain jackets.”
She figured they were set.
Little did she realize her “out in nature” photo shoot would become a complete mud pit disaster.
“Taking a well-worn, mucky path, I carried my toddler with my four-year-old son trailing behind, until I got to the thickest, deepest, ooziest mud and my foot got stuck. No sooner than I think, ‘uh oh,’ I hear. ‘Mommy, help’!”
Her son was mired, his foot sunk in mud deep enough for the liquid to start spilling into the tops of his boots.
“I twist frantically, trying not to drop my daughter – whom I’m carrying football style so her dirty boots don’t get all over me,” Tomljanovic recounted.
“Why did I wear a cream-coloured coat? Oh, yeah, I thought it would contrast nicely for the photos.”
By this point, her four-year-old was down on his front, eating mud.
“I’m sweating, trying not to fall over, and panicking as to how I’m going to get us all off the 10-foot wide path without getting completely caked,” she shared.
Tomljanovic called what was to follow as “luck.”
A couple of Good Samaritans are walking back, on the wrong side of the fence where there was still grass. Tomljanovic credited them with being smart and kind.
“I frantically waved them down, heaved my daughter over the fence to them, and headed back for my son.”
He managed to get up, before falling down again, because his boots weren’t going anywhere.
“I grabbed onto one boot and him and yanked. His other Spiderman Sorel came off in the mud, so doing a deeper squat than I can ever manage in yoga class, I bent down – balancing my son on one knee – and gave a mighty heave on the other boot. Success! I carry the whole kit and caboodle over to the safe grassy side of the fence.”
Still intent on getting photos for posterity and Instagram, she “forced” her children to “frog march” to the field of tulips that was still about 100 yards away, and pose for some pictures.
She recalls the kids looking rather miserable and repeatedly asking to go home.
“No kids, we’re having fun, making memories,” Tomljanovic said, reflecting back on last year’s ordeal.
“See, just look at these photos.”
Ironically, a friend recently Facebooked her a photo of her own daughter spinning in a tulle dress in a field of tulips, and Tomljanovic said for a moment she considered a return trip this Mother’s Day.
Then, looking up the Abbotsford tulip festival, and learning the Bloom farm is closed and relocating to North Okanagan after four years. She wondered if it was a sign?
Nah! Couldn’t be.
“I think we’ll try for the Chilliwack tulip festival this year, but I’ll manage my expectations,” Mom said.
If you have a Mother’s Day story – good or bad – to share, please email it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
– Tatiana Tomljanovic can be found on LinkedIn.
Have a story tip? Email: email@example.com