Does it sound crazy for me to admit that, as Mother’s Day approaches on Sunday, I feel conflicted over the occasion?
My qualms are two-fold:
1) Like other holidays, it’s become too commercialized; and,
2) Somehow it seems insensitive to celebrate motherhood so openly.
Don’t get me wrong. I love being Domer’s mom. Having him was the very best thing I’ve ever done. And I dearly love my own mom and am thankful she’s still here to offer advice, reassurance, recipes, cleaning tips, support, comfort, love, and all the other things children (even adult ones!) need.
But Domer doesn’t have to buy doodads to prove he loves me.
Nor do I have to do so for my mom.
Candy, flowers, cards, and dinner out are all nice. And appreciated.
But my late dad said it best when he he advised, ‘Just write me a letter. Or a poem. Something from the heart.’
Or a phone call saying Thank you and I love you.
Over-the-top celebrations of Mother’s Day make me uncomfortable. For Mother’s Day isn’t a special occasion to everyone; in fact, for some, it’s quite painful.
It’s a time for holding one’s breath and enduring. For shedding tears and hoping. For gritting one’s teeth and holing up until the day is over.
Take an unnamed young mom in my area, for example. This week, she and her husband held their 13-hour-old infant in their arms as he died. What kind of Mother’s Day is she going to have?
Or what about the women who’ve endured numerous miscarriages or who can’t have children of their own? What about those who don’t have, and never wanted, children, or those pregnant with children they don’t want?
While all of us have (or had) moms, not all those relationships are (or were) perfect.
What kind of Mother’s Day is it for someone having to live with a thorny, quarrelsome mom? Or an abusive or cold mom? Or a mom with Alzheimer’s Disease who can’t remember the child sitting in front of her? Or the person whose mom is deceased?
Hallmark doesn’t have cards for those situations, does it?
Honoring those who gave us life is fitting every day, not just on the second Sunday in May.
So buy doodads if you must, but don’t forget a hug and an expression of gratitude for the mom in your life. And if she is/was less than perfect, perhaps a prayer for forgiveness.
To my readers who are moms, Happy Mother’s Day!
And to those without moms, without children, or in sticky relationships with either, celebrate yourself and Spring!