As the warm summer breeze rolls into May, Mother’s Day approaches.
Although I have a school aged kid, if I may confess, I still felt awkward celebrating Mother’s Day until recently. Initially, I thought that celebrating one day for my 24/7, 365 days a year of work as a mom would not have any meaning, but rather put me on the spot by forcing others to express gratitude.
Well, that thought vanished pretty quickly, when I found myself scurrying up and down the aisles to pick out a gift for my own mom, and making a mental note to call her first thing in the morning on Mother’s Day.
I love my mom and I will never be able to repay even a fraction of what she has done for me. Although I always try to insert appreciative comments here and there as we talk, it never feels like quite enough, so I pick out a gift and write her a card for Mother’s Day, as I snuffle and get all teary-eyed. There is something about this particular day, for all moms, that gets us sentimental and makes our hearts throb.
My memories of Mother’s Day started with competing against the other kids in my class to make a prettier card for my mom, as though that would prove my love was stronger than theirs, and then setting up a clumsy breakfast, and later on, presenting her with the gift that I had bought with my meager childhood earnings.
I hadn’t thought about my own children’s position and what Mother’s Day would mean for them, until I looked back on Mother’s days with my mom. All these years Mother’s Day has been that special day that I felt free to express my love toward my mom, no matter how clumsy or awkward, because somehow on this day, it felt okay and accepted, no matter what. I want my children to feel the same way about Mother’s Day, and I’m so grateful to be at the receiving end, as well as still expressing my love toward my mom.
Mother’s Day origins
Ironically, the roots of Mother’s Day began with a mother who wished to improve sanitary conditions and stem her community’s appalling infant mortality rates. It was about a mom who wanted to give a better and cleaner environment to children.
In 1858, Ann Reeves Jarvis, who had had 13 children—but lost 9 in their infancy or early childhood, organized what she called, “Mothers’ Day Work Clubs,” to share information about hygiene and childcare with mothers in her community. Later on, she also coordinated Mothers’ Friendship Day, with mothers of the North and South working to bring together former foes on the battlefields of the American Civil War. She believed that as mothers, women could do so much more, not only for their own children, but for the world.
The actual celebration of Mother’s Day as we now know it was established by Anna Jarvis, the daughter of Ann Reeves Jarvis, on the second Sunday of May, to honor her mother’s tireless devotion and love.
Mother’s Day has gone on to bring people all over the world together in appreciation of the unconditional love and dedication mothers show for their loved ones, children, and families.
Mother’s Day Activity
If your child is older, you might be pleasantly surprised by a cute event on the morning of Mother’s Day, such as breakfast in bed, handmade gifts and cards, or maybe even heartwarming letters.
But, when your child is still too small to prepare anything independently for Mother’s Day, instead of dismissing the event altogether, explain what the day is for and why it is meaningful for you. You can even provide them with some materials and activities related to the day.
Do not think of this as forcing your child to take on something beyond their means. Instead, think of it as an opportunity to educate your child about a yearly event, and encourage him or her to express their love through their own efforts, however small or adorably clumsy they might be.
Children do not automatically know how to express their love and gratitude, so it is important to guide them and show them how, from an early age.
Happy Mother’s Day to all you moms! I’m so thankful to each of you, for bringing precious life to this world, giving your kids your unconditional love, and helping them grow into loving and caring human beings. You’re irreplaceable.
Here are some free daily quotes for the week of Mother’s Day and Mother’s day bookmarks for your little ones to colour and decorate.
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