What do you REALLY think, Mother?

NOTE: For those of you looking for Mother’s Day Letters, just check under form letters or press the tag for “Mother’s Day”.

I’ve never quite grasped the true meaning of Mother’s Day.  Although it’s an interesting concept.

Is it like Labor Day…but a day off for Mothers?

Is it a training ground for young children, who, without a good example might never realize that Mom makes their world go around?  Okay,  that’s valid enough.

If it’s a day to remember our mothers I haven’t mastered the timing.  Thoughts of my mother come unbidden.  They pop up on any old day.  I can conjure up sentiment on the first Sunday in May, but I’m not sure that memories are any more clear or poignant.

And did the inventor of Mother’s Day ever consider the double-, sometimes triple-bind that causes even more stress than joy for the honoree?  How does one show suitable gratitude for one’s children at the same time one is honoring one’s mother?

That was a lovely breakfast in bed, children.  Even the curdled milk in the unwashed wine glass was great.  But excuse me, I have to get up and call my Mom.  And I’d better run by and give Grandma a kiss.

I have grandchildren who are feting their mothers (my daughters*), who I hope are not fretting about feting me as much as I am about feting my dad’s wife.

And when I went to buy a card for Dad’s wife, I saw the lineup of cards for daughters.  Am I dropping the ball here?  Who should call whom?  Who gets priority?

You can see what a stressful day this can become.

There’s another thing that confuses me.  If we are especially attentive on Mother’s Day, does it let us off the hook for the rest of the year?

Because personally, my dear children, I’m going to be a little bit miffed if you only remember me one day of the year.  I realize the peer pressure is strong to call me on Mother’s Day and I always love hearing from you.  But I’d still appreciate a chat on a rainy day in March when I am sure that gray skies will last forever.

Or call me on Saturday afternoon when your son gets a goal (or strikes out).  Or when you daughter makes her college choice.  Or when you can’t remember that recipe for the potato salad that I used to make in the winter.

Call me just to talk if you want to give me a REAL thrill.

I hope this doesn’t sound gritchy or spiteful.  I’m not feeling abused or neglected.

I’m only venting…about a holiday that sets up unreal expectations for every Mother whose child has been her heart and soul every moment of every day since the miracle of its precious birth.

Never mind….


*Please note that this includes all of my daughters-in-law (even that lovely woman who can’t legally be my daughter-in-law due to antiquated laws).


  1. Oh, you said it so perfectly! Sometimes I wish the day was never invented. (I’m happy this Mother’s Day to concentrate on a belated party for my son’s 21st bday.) I do hope, though, your Mother’s Day will be a pleasant one. 🙂


    • I’ll have a great one because I’m much more assertive than when I was younger. Every day of my life must have something that feeds my soul.


  2. Okay, allow me to be flippant. My home consists of three motherless children. I exploit it to the fullest extent at every opportunity of emotional blackmail, Try my facebook wall for some hilarious situations.


  3. Probably Mother’s Day is a bit like Christmas. It shall remind us to be kind, but that isn’t to be limited to just one day. It’s just a reminder because most people need that from time to time, but it’ll hopefully stick with them a little longer.

    I must admit I’m shocked and ashamed by how sparsely I get what my mom does for me (particularly since I usually see myself as a *somewhat* thoughtul person), but she does it in a way that’s so unobtrusive and thus so … invisible? A couple of days ago, I told her on the phone how much courage it takes for me to imagine that I’m going to refuse to work myself to death in academia, for making a career. And she said that me doing that takes the same courage for her. Then I suddenly understood, and I felt so small and so very awestruck. She bears so much, simply because she loves me so much. …


    • Do you think she sees it as a burden? Personally, I doubt it. It is a part of being a mother to care about one’s children and how things are going for them. Even though we have faith in our children to live their own lives, we have this naturally empathy that lets us feel with them. She probably sees you only as a joy.


      • I don’t think she takes it as a burden, but it’s also not only a joy. I didn’t realize that what affects me affects her so much as well, sometimes even more. I’m her most vulnerable spot, and sometimes that idea scares me a little.


        • I think what I mean by (motherly) joy is that even in the darkest, most difficult times that my children have been in, my love for them is such an enrichment for my life that it fills me with a joy for having them in my life. I have never felt as though any of the difficulties outweighed the joy of being a mother. Although you have your hard times (like everyone), you are a person who gives live to the world. That means that your mother’s love glows brightly with that knowledge.
          Oh, never mind…I’m not able to express myself well on this. Perhaps because I can only superimpose my feelings on you and your mother and that never works:)


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