Mother’s Day, and all its meanings.
Mother’s Day. Did you know that it started in the United States not necessarily to celebrate mothers, but as a pacifist measure way back in 1870 as Julia Ward Howe issued her Mother’s Day Proclamation?
It wasn’t until 1914 that it was officially recognized by the United States Congress after a tireless effort by Anna Marie Jarvis, and the intention was still to honor mothers who had lost sons in wars. Soon, it became commercialized, and Jarvis “herself became a major opponent of what the holiday had become”.
I know how difficult Mother’s Day can be – some people’s mothers are no longer with them, or there is significant estrangement. (I know because my mother lost her own mother as a teenager, and there are people close to me who are estranged from their mothers.)
And then there are those who are not mothers, for whatever reason, by choice or by circumstance (or sometimes a combination of both, like me). This can be a bittersweet day, as we continue to celebrate our own mothers and mourn what has not yet been or what will not ever be.
Lissa Rankin, MD, is one amazing woman who has not only practiced OB/GYN, but has also written a book entitled What’s Up Down There? and is now a “Pink Medicine Life Coach” along with running an awesome website, Owning Pink.
She honored those of us who are not mothers with a great piece about the “aunties” who surround her and her daughter, touching their lives with grace and love.
This is the kind of woman I strive to be on Mother’s Day. Celebrating the mothers in my life, along with the children in my life – being an aunt to my nieces and nephews, being an auntie to the children of my closest friends. It doesn’t even have to be about sending a card or flowers or whatever, just greeting each mother I know with a “Happy Mother’s Day” seems to be enough.