Is it bad that today I am glad we had a devastating flood here a week ago? All the attention has been focused on the flood victims and how we can help them. There is little air left for thinking about mothers. The mood is still somber but with some hope, not the joy and flowers that usually accompany this day. In many ways the city's mood matches what I normally feel on this day. Sad, but yet trying to find the hope for the future.
And then I realize how the flood victims feel something different. Usually I feel overlooked and forgotten today. As if I am not worthy as a women, can't understand what it is like to love another or be complete, because I am not a mother. But after spending two days volunteering in various neighborhoods and seeing the outpouring of support for these communities, they cannot feel forgotten this week. I hope in another month the community is still out there helping.
When I call my own mother to wish her well on this day, she ask me if I called my sister. I responded, "No, she is not my mother." Why am I expected to honor my sister when she has plenty of children to wish her well? I am fine with taking time to remember all our own mothers have done for us, but I resent the idea that we must pay extra attention to all mothers. As a boss, you might do something nice for your secretary on Secretary Day, but you don't call up your sister who happens to be a secretary or send her some flowers. At least there are some writers out there remembering that women who are not mothers are still worthy.
Having the flood juxtaposed with Mother's Day gives me an idea of how I might want to spend this day, should I ever reach the other side. I don't want an overpriced brunch. I want to spend time in an activity that teaches my future children one of the key lessons I hope they learn in their life: if someone is in need, you find a way to help. Isn't that the best way to honor your mother? Not by buying her some pretty flowers, but by spending time living the values she tried so hard to instill in you.
**Update: I guess I wasn't forgotten today after all. I was going to make some FB status update to remind all us non-mothers out there that we are special too. But then I logged on and no fewer than 3 friends had said something about remembering those who long to be mothers or lost their mothers or children. I needed those good thoughts today.
5 months ago