It is amazing to me that the holiday we know as Mothers' Day has been around for only 100 years. Amazing because I thought it had been around longer than that - and amazing that is seems to be a "western" celebration, and not a world-wide one.
What would the whole world be like if all cultures honored mothers? I'm not saying everyone has to spend money on cards and flowers and dining out for Sunday Brunches ... I'm just wondering if everyone felt a special gratitude to their mother and looked to their grandmothers for life lessons - what would our world be like.
Mothers have been around for always. None of us would be here had it not been for our own mothers... or lived this long and gotten through all the troubles we seemed to have gathering around us if it were not for a mother-figure in our lives. Yes Dad's are important too - but I'll get to that next month.
I am concerned for those mothers in the world who have no one to whom they can turn for guidance, advice or just some sharing time - some way of knowing that even though it seems difficult, "this too shall pass." I worry about the societies that consider females as property to be used, abused, discarded and slain on a whim. Somewhere in their history there has to have been an ancient fable that spoke of a special woman. Surely they grow up listening to stories told by their elders that share an awareness of mothers and the love they bring.
My mother had her own mother to help her get through the difficult times. Gran was someone special in my life, as well. She was the sort of woman who seemed never to complain. She read the Bible daily, and sang hymns throughout her daily tasks. She didn't have it easy - but she made it appear to be easy - being an example to us how we can have faith and trust that God will see us through.
I remember my mother crying because of something I said that made her sad. And, I also remember her crying when something I did made her happy. But most of all, I remember my mother loving me in spite of how I behaved. She was saddened (often) and worried (more often) and just plain giving me over to Jesus, because she had no hope in making a difference in my life. She had done all she could to keep me walking and living on the "right path." And I was determined that she wasn't capable of understanding the nuances that made a difference between her life and mine.
It wasn't until I was a mother of my own two children that I suddenly understood all that she had gone through with raising me. She allowed me to make my mistakes - and loved me anyway. My sister remembers promising our mother she would not follow in my footsteps and perpetuate the sadness that she watched Mom live through. My sister remained while I left home to find myself. There was nothing left for Mom to do but pray that I would be protected.
Gran's prayers, as well as Mom's prayers, saw me through almost unscathed. I was blessed by their unconditional love and faith. My own life is richer for the lessons I learned simply by observing these two loving women in my life.... AND for their timely phone calls clear across the country - when they must have intuitively known I was about ready to smash things or just close the door and walk away. My children are beautiful examples of all I could hope for them - and they developed their own innate ability to intuit and care for others - even when I thought I hated being a mother and was not an example I wanted them to perpetuate.
Last weekend they gathered us all together to celebrate and share the love that wraps around all of us. I felt honored, blessed and secure in my place in their hearts. I'll carry this all year long, knowing that it will be renewed again next May. I would wish this for all mothers all over the world. Namaste.