Hallmark holidays are the term used for days of the year where the expectation for celebration involves spending money on gifts for a specific type of person. Me being a rather lowly breadwinner living leagues away from the target of this specific day means getting creative and delivering a gift that is just as valuable as a big bouquet of spring flowers but without the price tag.
Mom, this is for you. I know you read my blog regardless of the content, a fact that both flatters and fills me with gratitude, so I thought I would take Mother’s Day and use it to address you directly. Happy holidays.
Although Mother’s Day seems like a commercial fabrication, the reasons behind the celebration are just. Spring is a perfect time of year to pay homage to the women responsible for making the world turn as the season itself signifies birth and life. Mothers are the living embodiment of spring and carry the fresh sentiment of the period with them throughout the year. I am thankful for this as I often forget the preciousness of these few months until they return again.
Or until I see my mother.
I cannot be overly general with my interpretation of this human role. Many women assume motherhood with vastly different approaches. From here until the end of this musing, I will now focus on the brand best representing my own mom. Particularly on what she taught me after 24 years of being one.
The real list of lessons given is too long for a blog post but here are a select few.
My mother taught me the beauty of simplicity.
We are often sold the idea that the more ostentatious and extravagant a lifestyle, the more fulfilling. Wealth is nearly always accompanied by an adage to this way of living and a fantasy world hosting wild parties with guests dressed to the nines is constantly shoved into our faces. People exposed to these visions begin to yearn for a taste of this assumed nirvana and neglect the joys given to them from other, easier things.
I was spared from pining for this world. As exposed as I am to the realities of this particular group of people, never was I tempted to jump off the cliff and into the pit to join them.
I pay homage to my mother for equipping me with the knowledge that the good exists not in the downtown penthouses filled with money and models but in the first rays of springtime sun each morning. Because of her I prefer taking long and expansive strolls through the world, absorbing the warmth of the day whilst entertaining my eyes with the goings on of the streets. Nothing can beat a meditative walk through a densely wooded terrain. No amount of oceanside partying can compare to a healthy session of sunshine on the skin. For this, I thank her.
Because of my mother, I understand the importance of a few good friends.
My mother is not a perfect person. Living with her for the 19 years of my childhood exposed me to her shortcomings; some of which I inherited. Though they are flaws in the grand scheme of things, they showcase a tenderness in my mom’s heart that leaves her vulnerable to abuse.
Growing up, my mom had many different friends. These women, mostly mothers with children in similar age to her own, would come calling upon her for company. My mom is a comedian, a counselor and a cheerleader. She is also quick to forgive. Many of these women took advantage of that last part and took advantage of what my mother could give them.
They came, they left and now I see them living their lives beyond the friendship they held with my mom and I understand. These characters are lost and missing vital pieces of humanity. This must be the case for my mother’s friendship is an invaluable gift. I have undergone similar relationships but can look to my mother now, to the few women who have been there for so long, and understand. Quality friendships are rare but so worth it.
To cherish your family is a gift, to keep in touch makes one strong.
I am not a good communicator. Like my father, I go days without answering messages awaiting me on my phone and emails sitting in my inbox. I am not sure why I have the tendency to let days go by without returning word but that is my nature. My mother is a different kind.
She works hard to make sure the five of us, myself my dad and two brothers, remain key players in one another’s lives. Before I thought little of this but as I grow, the importance of these relations is no longer lost on me.
I value her resilience in prodding us all with her check-ins. She is the bridge that unites my family and without her, I do not think my relationships with them would be as strong. Family is so important and her dedication to us is a gift that never ceases.
A mother’s love is unlike any other. I am lucky to have the kind she gives.
Mom. Thank you for loving me as you do. I know we do not always see eye-to-eye but your loyalty to me and to our family is truly something to celebrate. For you and for all mothers out there,
Happy Mother’s Day.