In Defense of Mother’s Day

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With Mother’s Day coming this weekend I’ve seen a few posts this week giving Mother’s Day a pretty bad rap with arguments against consumerism or insensitivity to those who have lost mothers, or women who may long to be mothers and are yet to be, all of which are valid points.
When I first read a few of these posts though, I was pretty annoyed and I had to stop for a while and really figure out why I was letting it get to me. It wasn’t just because I am a mother. I agreed with a lot of the points.
  • Yes, virtually EVERY holiday is hugely commercialized and encourages gross and greedy consumerism.
  • Yes, we all know someone who grieves for their mother or for the children they do not have and we have a responsibility to show freely our love, support and sensitivity to those women.
  • No, mothers are not inherently superior to other people on our planet.
  • Yes, we should love and show our gratitude for our mothers every day of the year, not on one specific day only.
Can I argue though, that we’re villainizing the wrong thing? We are humans with a desire for ritual, tradition and extra reasons to open our hearts and show our love. We CAN choose to celebrate each other a little bit more on specific days without feeding into consumerism. I’m going to argue that there is positivity in the designation of a special day as a reminder to be grateful all year for the people in our lives. Holidays aren’t the problem.
Greed is the problem. Fear is the problem. Comparison is the problem. All of these are the thieves of joy.
We can choose to intentionally celebrate each other every year on our birthdays. We can choose to intentionally celebrate our fathers each year on Father’s Day, and our Mothers on Mother’s Day. We can choose to celebrate the Earth, teachers, veterans, the Solstice, LOVE, and freedom a little more intentionally with the gentle reminder of a day specifically designated for the celebration of each. We can do it by sending our thoughts of gratitude to the person, to God, to the universe. We can do it by handwritten notes, hugs, kisses, wildflowers, bonfires, feasts, rituals, dancing, or even a store bought gift. We can choose not to judge people who celebrate differently than we do, and choose to send out love and positive energy rather then comparison or condemnation.
This intentional celebration does not mean you are automatically demeaning everyone else who doesn’t fall into that category. Yes, there are people who do demean, judge, compare and condemn. We should not let them rob the holidays of the joy that we can assign to them. When did it become wrong to celebrate someone for something just because EVERYONE else didn’t have or wasn’t that “something.”
There are strong and wondrous women who are mothers. There are equally strong and wondrous women who are not and want more than anything to be or those who choose not to be mothers. All of these women are magically different and unique and I celebrate you all. We all have our own paths, our darkness, our struggles and challenges. We all have the choice to celebrate and support each other on our separate and collective paths, or to compare ourselves to others and condemn our differences.
Gabby Bernstein in “The Universe Has Your Back” explains that at the end of the day, the energy we are sending out is always manifesting one of two things. Fear or love. If our energy is negative, judgmental, angry, condemning or unforgiving we are manifesting fear. For me, celebrating mothers on Mother’s Day is manifesting love and choosing joy.
The motherhood passage is challenging, frightening, rewarding, transformative and shows the woman in the process more strength and love than she ever knew she previously had. I think we can all agree on that.
Celebrate your mother in whatever way manifests the most joy for you and choose love over fear.
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