Mother’s Day might be a day when you can expect chocolate and flowers, but it’s also a good day to reflect on what being a mother means. In the ups and downs of life we can sometimes forget that being a mother is a special role that connects one generation to another.
On this Mother’s Day, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on some of the special things I’ve experienced as a mother in the last 12 months, that I don’t really think about in my day-to-day life…
My eldest graduated from high school in November. The whole process was drawn out over a week with lost of “lasts”, but I still treasure the grin on his face that final day and the hug he gave his brother as he walked towards the school gate for the final time as a student. There is nothing so special as watching your baby suddenly turn into a man.
My kitchen often looks like a bomb site these days. I say “my kitchen” because I’m still clinking to the thought that as the main producer of meals in the family I have a right to call that space mine. But my daughter loves baking and cake decorating. I hate to imagine how much of our monthly data allowance she has used up on watching cupcake tutorials. The products speak for themselves though, and while we still have to work on finishing the task by washing up and putting everything away, there’s something lovely about watching your children discover their talents and joys.
My middle child has started Year 11, which is such a big step up from Year 10. The last two years of school put so much pressure on our young people as they struggle to work out what they will do when they leave school, but also do the best they can do while still there. He’s chosen a pretty full program of subjects that require good habits in revision and practice. Watching him develop these skills and make his own adjustments when he doesn’t quite get it right, shows me he’s going to be fine in the long run. I keep saying to him that every term this year is a practice run for what he needs to do next year and he’s got four chances to refine it before he makes a run for it in Year 12. And that’s really what every teenager year should be too… A chance to have a practice run of the adult life with lots of support and grace along the way.
One of our crew has battled a very difficult illness for a long time, that really took it’s toll last year. I wonder sometimes where they find the strength to keep fighting and how much hope I can continue to give them when it seems so hopeless at times. The last year has taught me that every one of our children are a precious gift, that we have been specifically chosen to nurture. We should never apologise for stepping in and being their mum when we need to, and we also should enjoy every day we get to have with them, no matter how ugly it may feel at the time.
So I’ll leave you with this poem I found on She Knows, that I think is just perfect for this Mother’s Day.
Gestures of Love
By Sarah Marchant
The smallest, flickering moment —
the turning-on of a lamp, the brewing
of just one more cup of tea,
the contribution of spare change
because of one mention that it bought
thrift store paperbacks;
tiny affectionate expressions
pile up, a hand at my shoulder
or a kiss on my cheek.
Smiles in my direction
crank up the atmosphere,
wiping away the
grime of my thoughts —
listening, supporting, forgiving.
Love of a mother is
sweeter than chocolate,
stronger than hurricanes,
thicker than blood, and
Happy Mother’s Day all! What makes your life as a mother special?