Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mother's Day: A Gift of Time

Mother's Day has always seemed to me a little like Valentine's Day. It is a chance to say thank you, and to make up for all of the other times we didn't say thank you, to our mothers and grandmothers. With the help of the Hallmark industry, there are numerous cards to express these sentiments and a variety of sales to encourage the purchase of extravagant gifts. Like Valentine's day, there is tremendous pressure to "go big." And, like Valentine's day, if you do everything right, it shouldn't be an atonement, just a day of celebration and an excuse to eat chocolate.

Because I usually spend Mother's Day just me and my children (my husband is always leading a trip to Israel), this day is not about gifts or giving Mom a break. I happily accept what my children have made for me (the school gifts improve significantly each year) and then I plan a day which allows me to spend time with my children in very intentional ways. Basically, I plan the day I wish I could do more often but is often taken over with the busyness of work and life. 

Fortunately, Mother's Day is almost as sacred as Yom Kippur and very little is ever scheduled on it. Thus, I have the gift of a whole Sunday to be with my children and (hopefully) not have to think about work. I have planned the day to include an outing to the zoo, a picnic, a nap, time in the backyard sprinkler, and then a Disney movie in our PJs. Dinner may or may not be takeout. 

Mother's Day for me is a gift of a day to focus on being a Mother. It is about the aspirations I have to be fully present in my parenting whenever possible and the joy of just being with my children. I pray that for all who celebrate Mother's Day, in whatever way has meaning for you and your family, it is a day of joy and gratitude. And for those for whom Mother's Day causes pain, I pray there is healing and comfort ahead. 

Now, regardless of how we feel about Mother's Day, may we all enjoy a delicious brunch!

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