Happy Mother’s Day to all of you who mother or care for children, family members, pets and gardens. I don’t mind the commerciality (is that a word?) of the day and it’s rendered some pretty neat gifts from my kids throughout the years.
There was the nearly bionic spider plant that wouldn’t die and I swear produced little baby spider plants overnight. I got that from Cassie when she was in second or third grade. Carlene brought home a pumpkin plant one year that we planted in our tiny little yard and we learned a few months later why you don’t grow pumpkins in tiny little yards.
I’ve received hand prints in plaster, hand prints in finger paint, and a wind chime made of a small clay pot and a washer. I looked forward to the Friday before Mother’s Day every year my kids were in grade school because I knew they would have been working on some gift project in school and would be so excited to give it to me. Their anticipation and excitement was the true gift.
Two years ago my daughters gave me a picture frame montage of 10 photos of them dressed in “I (heart) Mom” shirts. I’m not sure what’s up this year, but I have strict instructions not to look in Carlene’s car. She’s upstairs sleeping, having come up to Clarion last night to visit a friend and to see me today. It’s like the Friday before Mother’s Day all over. I’m sure Cassie will call this afternoon after her shift at the hospital and ask if I like their gift. I can already say I do and I have no idea what it is.
I know in Buddhist thought nothing is permanent and certainty is an illusion, and in most contexts that is true, but I am certain I love my children more than anything or anyone and I always will, in life and death. I love mothering more than chocolate or mountains or money or sex. It will always be my favorite thing.
A close second favorite thing is being Emily’s sister, who was born this day, Mother’s Day, May 11, 1975. Happy birthday, Em! Last year’s Mother’s Day blog was about my sister and how my mother had her when she was 43, which caught her completely by surprise (my mom, not Emily). You can read it here: My Favorite Mother’s Day – 1975.
One other note, I know Wikipedia isn’t always a reliable source for facts, but the information they have about Mother’s Day origins around the world is very interesting and, with the little research I’ve done, seems solid. Click here to read it.
I hope you get some time today to reflect on the ways you mother the people and things in your life, and how they satisfy you in return. I truly wish you a very happy Mother’s Day, even if you’re a guy or you don’t get a card or flowers or go out to brunch because you haven’t birthed something. Mothering and nurturing should never be limited to the womb.