May 14, 2023: Happy Mother's Day
I always believed that Mother’s Day was created by Anna Jarvis in 1908 and became an official U.S. holiday in 1914. A holiday that was put in place to celebrate maternal bonds and the influence that those bonds have on who we become. However, according to historian Heather Cox Richardson, it actually started in the 1870s when women began to realize that one of the ways to protect their children and their families, was to be actively involved in decisions that would impact them. I like to think that the foundation of Mother’s Day is grounded in activism.
Regardless of the founding, I think Mother’s Day is essentially a celebration of the female influences in our lives.
I have been blessed to have a life filled with women who have had a positive influence on me. Women who have loved, supported, pushed, challenged, and accepted me. Women who have shared their wisdom and demonstrated their courage. Women who have shown strength, vulnerability, and insight. Women who have led the way as well as walked beside me.
My mother, my grandmothers, my mother-in-law, my great-grandmothers. My aunts, my step-mother, my cousins, my sisters, my female friends. And my daughter. They have all brought such varied and valuable things to my life. Even those who are no longer here, I can still feel their influence and see their impact, in my life.
There is something so powerful about female relationships. We get it. We understand the complexity of the world and the varied roles that make up the tapestry of our lives. We realize the work that is invested in each of these roles and the heart and soul we pour into them.
This year our local extended family celebrated Mother’s Day last week at my daughter’s home. It was not only a gathering to toast mothers, but it was our monthly family dinner. We were a group of 4 generations from 3 years old to 86 years old. We swam, played games, laughed. Fun, hugs, and food were enjoyed.
Today will be a quiet day, as I reach out in texts and messages to so many of the fabulous women in my life. So, CHEERS to all the women out there! Whether you are a mother or not, you have undoubtedly impacted someone’s life.