Year five since her passing and this holiday still slices another piece of my heart. Here is my offering of verbiage to accompany the ascendant sacrifice to the universe of Moms.
If you lived a life of love with your Mom, then you’ll certainly understand what I mean. For those who have experienced a different sort, then I feel the question on your mind. How does one feel all of this reverence for a parent? Believe me, it’s not too difficult when you are blessed with one who gets it even half right.
To set up a context, my Mom was a loon who led me from the depths of harsh reality right up to the bright shining moon. She had her quirks one would witness daily, but she also made my growing up a central part of her universe (in addition to “looking good” while she toiled at it.) She loved Hallmark holidays and with that came this: a training of how to make Mom feel special on her one day of the year recognized on American calendars. This second Sunday in May, a month before school ends, became the day I learned to “shower the people you love with love and show them the way that you feel.” (Thank you, James Taylor.)
Carnations are the flower of Mother’s Day thanks to Anna Jarvis, the woman who conceived the idea and brought 500 of them to the first celebration in 1908. *(this wiki tells me)* But interestingly enough, I discovered that she decried the commercialization of the holiday when “the greeting card industry” took it over with their purchased cards that displaced the personal letter to Mom. Go, Anna! And another quick aside: this day is one that Americans spend $2.6 billion a year on flowers.
I always created my own cards, and this began at age 3. From that second Sunday in May in 1965, I was forever bound to make this one Sunday a special one for Mom. Later in my adolescence, I would awaken her to a breakfast in bed, and then whisk her off to the movies or a play. I would save up my earnings from odd jobs to do something expensive and special to treat her. She no longer had a husband to do such things as they divorced when I was three (Ah! there’s the significance! Eureka! I found it!) And my brothers? Well, you know boys. They just aren’t wired that way. So this day of planning was left to me. Perhaps it was a personal training for my later life as I’ve always been one to conjure up holidays and cards for everyone. Being thoughtful is a lost art in America. It’s time to bring that back!
Many of us mourn the passing of our Mom this day while others wake up to adoring family eyes. Many of us roll over with a pronounced harumph when our kid(s) forget to make us feel special. For those with thoughtless offspring, treat yourself this day to YOU! Forget what isn’t there and make it your day – go pick one pretty piece of this earth, place it in a glass and tell yourself that you’re special. BE SPECIAL!