Mother’s Day offers us opportunities to express our love and thanks to the women who have cared for us in our lives — the birth or adoptive mother, the grandmother, the teacher, or the elder friend who have helped grow us up. But it’s not all Hallmark cards and breakfasts-in-bed. This particular holiday can stir up feelings of grief and pain for some of us. We suffer for the mother we have lost or a mother we felt we never really had. And yet, perhaps we might be able to simultaneously hold our sorrow and marvel at the fact that our existence is born from countless acts of nurturing from sources far and wide. In arriving to the fact of our lives, here and now, our appreciation of mothering – in its many forms – has the capacity to grow quite expansive. In offering gratitude for the gift of our lives, we celebrate Mother’s Day as it honors this expansive experience of nurturing.
Let us appreciate too that Mother’s Day has its roots in the peace movement. For more than a century since its inception, Mother’s Day continues to be a day of protest. Women have taken to the streets to call our attention to the injustices of war, poverty, inadequate healthcare, child labor, gun violence, and more. These are the fierce, socially engaged underpinnings of Mother’s Day.
So this Mother’s Day, we invite you to honor the mother-figures in your life and also to marvel at the intricate web of dependence and care that holds us all. May we honor the work of taking care of each other. It is in the recognition of our profound interconnection with one another that we can rise up to protect what we hold most sacred. Let us be moved too by the thousands of activist mothers before us. Let us appreciate and celebrate our deep bonds with each other. And let us not forget that we need each other’s care.
The images above are excerpted from Everyday Gratitude © by A Network for Grateful Living; book design and lettering by Alethea Morrison; watercolors and cover illustration © Katie Eberts, with additional watercolors by Clikchic Designs; used with permission from Storey Publishing.
Everyday Gratitude is an expression of our mission, vision and values to bring forth a peaceful, thriving, and sustainable world – held as sacred by all – and makes a meaningful gift for Mother’s Day.
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