Another year, another Mother’s Day. For me it’s not much different to any other day. The Kids will wake me up at the crack of dawn and there will be no breakfast in bed, or lie ins. I can’t remember the last time I had breakfast in bed or a lie in at home. I guess there are some advantages of a hospital stay after all!
I have had many a Mother’s Day with no cards or presents while I was a single parent. My big kids usually treat me now they have their own money and independence. This year I will have gifts off my little ones, I took them to buy them on a gift voucher that I received in return for a Mother’s Day Gift Post.
My Facebook page will be filled with photos and posts as my friends will boast about the gifts they have received. It will also feature my friends who have lost their Mothers. As you get older you see this trend, a lot of my peer’s parents have passed away. Just like mine.
Some Mothers will be desperately missing their estranged children. It happens, families break up and divisions occur. Losing your Mother is hard, so is losing your child.
Then there are the Women who cannot be called Mothers because despite how long they tried it just never happened for them. They couldn’t bear a child for whatever reason and no matter how much they have come to terms with their plight, Mother’s Day is always a day that makes them think.
When I was young my Dad would always give me some pennies on Mother’s Day so I could choose a bar of chocolate for my Mum. I would make her card, if I hadn’t made one at school then I’d make one at home. I remember once, when I was about 9 years old, we tried some origami at school. I made a little pot which was then filled with a few little peppermint creams that I’d also made. (They were just icing sugar and peppermint essence mixed together but my Mum loved them.) I told the teacher that once my Mum had eaten the peppermint creams she could use the little paper pot as an ashtray. It took a while to understand why my teacher laughed so much.
When I was much older and had children of my own. I became estranged from my Mum. It wasn’t anything I’d done, or anything that she had done. But we found ourselves on opposing sides and she told me that she never wanted to see me again. I didn’t see her or speak to her for five years and during that time she moved house and I didn’t even know where she’d gone.
Mother’s Day would come around and I’d look at the cards in the shop and wonder why none of the lovely verses applied to my Mum.
“Thanks for always being there for me”
“To the one who has helped, cared, worried and been there through it all”
I’d had a dreadful time, I was at an all time low, and my Mum had disowned me, let me down, abandoned me.
I’d stand in the card shops and cry.
Then one year I picked up a card, a very plain one that just said “Happy Mother’s Day.” I wrote on it, ” I miss you.” Then I gave it to my auntie and asked her to pass it on. Then I had a letter off my Mum thanking me for the card and she gave me her phone number. I called, and I spoke to her for the first time in five years.
It took us two years to build up any kind of relationship again. Then, just as we were planning to spend our first Christmas in many years together, she was diagnosed with cancer. A very aggressive cancer that was way beyond treatment. We did spend Christmas together in a hospice. She didn’t wake up that day. She didn’t wake up any day afterwards either.
Should we Ban Mother’s Day?
I was watching a debate on morning television about banning Mother’s Day. It seems it sucks for so many people. But the truth is, there are so, so many really good mothers and even step-mothers and foster mothers out there and they all deserve recognition. And if that recognition doesn’t come from their own children (as is often the case) at least they can take a moment to feel that they are special because there is a whole day devoted to the appreciation of mothers.
I’ve been there. I’ve had Mother’s Day when I was a single parent and my young children have not even made me a card at school. I’ve had Mother’s Day when I thought my partner would take time to make things special for me even though we couldn’t afford gifts, but he hasn’t. I’ve had many Mother’s Day that I’ve spent missing my own Mum so much that the pain was unbearable.
There are Mums or would be Mums out there now, hurting on Mother’s Day. But, I still don’t think the day should be banned.
Mother’s Day Today.
There are also Mum’s being spoilt and really feeling the appreciation. (I have one friend who called me to say she’d had a £300 tattoo for her Mother’s Day gift. When I said it was an unusual gift she started listing all the designer clothes she had, the perfumes, the accessories, the fabulous car, the perfect home and garden. She told me ‘I have everything I could possibly want or need so I thought a tattoo was a great idea!’) Was I jealous? Maybe in the past I may have felt a pang, but now my values are so much different to hers.
Boo made me a card in her break time at school. They don’t tend to make cards at school anymore because there are so many diverse families out there. Inside the card she had written;
“I love you even though you are disabled. I still love you and I always did keep my promise to look after you. I love looking after you and if I had one wish it will be before you came back to me and look after me. You always looked after me so I want to look after you, from Boo, who will always help you along the way.”
I wish it wasn’t that way. I wish that her wish would come true and I could go back to being me, the one who looked after her. No, ten year old should think that their role is to look after their Mum.
Mother’s Day can be difficult, but it can be wonderful too.
How do you celebrate Mother’s Day?