Saturday, May 8, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

Tomorrow is Mother's Day. Before I had a baby myself, when I was still a wee little one, I would joke about how they should have a day of celebration for the children as well, complete with cards and presents. After almost 20 hours of labor and 17 years of child rearing, I understand the importance of this one day. The first Mother's Day celebration was organized in 1870, by Julia Ward Howe, who hoped to bring mothers together for a peaceful day protesting the Civil War. Today's holiday is much different. In a typical American style it has been overtaken by consumerism. Yet I can tell you, that the best Mother's Day present I received wasn't a card or bouquet of roses. It was walking into the kitchen to see my then 16 year old, scrubbing the sink, clean dishes stacked neatly in the drain, without being asked.

Tomorrow I will honor my own mother, who is always there, lurking in the shadows, ready to give her support and love when I need it. I could quote from a corny poem about the importance of mothers, but most have one very important quality, they give because they love. The mothers that came together in 1870, came together because they wanted their children to stay alive to live full lives. Today's mothers, the ones that we honor with pansies and poetry, want the best for their children. So for my mom and all of you who are moms, Happy Mother's Day. I hope you receive the same love, peace, and joy that you have so freely given us children. And to you children, here's a hint, actions speak louder than flowers, although the flowers just might do it too. (In the picture, my mom is in pink!)

Ode to Mothers
by Kristin F. McKendell

Mothers cannot do it all

But surely do they try.
Mothers hear the angel's call,
To comfort all who cry.
Mothers for themselves may fall,
For others they will fly.
Mother's bear the weight of all,
For their children, they would die.
A Mother's gift extends beyond
All bounds of time and space.
Her lovingness and nurturing
Make Earth a peaceful place.

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