Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother’s Day Isn’t Limited By The Calendar

There are some holidays that just seem to get overlooked. No matter how much effort we put into celebrating the day, it just doesn’t seem to be enough. I have always felt that way about Mother’s Day as there is so much that my mom has done for me and so much support that she has given to me and my siblings that I don’t know if there is anything that we could do to really show how much I appreciate everything that she has given to me and the love that has never wavered no matter how crazy my life plans tend to be.

While we have this day that is prepackaged to honor our mothers, the origins of the day really show the love that most of us feel and the kind of honor that we wish to bestow upon the wonderful women that raised us. When you read about the founding of the holiday on Wikipedia you will get my point:

The modern American holiday of Mother's Day was first celebrated in 1908, when Anna Jarvis held a memorial for her mother in Grafton, West Virginia. Her campaign to make "Mother's Day" a recognized holiday in the United States began in 1905, the year her beloved mother, Ann Reeves Jarvis, died. Anna’s mission was to honor her own mother by continuing work she had started and to set aside a day to honor mothers, "the person who has done more for you than anyone in the world." Anna's mother, Ann Jarvis, was a peace activist who had cared for wounded soldiers on both sides of the Civil War and created Mother’s Day Work Clubs to address public health issues.

Due to the campaign efforts of Anna Jarvis, several states officially recognized Mother's Day, the first in 1910 being West Virginia, Jarvis’ home state. In 1914 Woodrow Wilson signed the proclamation creating Mother’s Day, the second Sunday in May, as a national holiday to honor mothers. In a thank-you note to Wilson, Jarvis wrote of a “great Home Day of our country for sons and daughters to honor their mothers and fathers and homes in a way that will perpetuate family ties and give emphasis to true home life.” Jarvis became critical, however, of the commercialization of the day.

So, while I will do what I can on this day to show my mom how much I love her and appreciate her, I will keep working every day to make sure I convey that beyond the confines of a single block on the calendar. I know too many people who rely on holidays and only reach out when there is another reason to call their mom. I don’t ever want to end up like one of those people (although I think there were times in my life when I did). There really doesn’t need to be a reason to talk, to make sure you remain connected, and to let you mom know (even if it is not directly stated) that you love her.