A salute to Mom on Mother’s Day…a most important mother in our life

Published 11:10 am Friday, May 10, 2024

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My Mom is in Heaven today, as are so many other mothers. But while she was on this earth, she left her mark and a heritage. She raised ten children, four of whom have joined her in Heaven.

She was a special person. Mothers are our best friends – one with life experiences, one who only wants the best for us. Because you are her child. Mothers have the power to shape us, guide us, alter our paths in life. Their love and support can make all the difference.

There’s no question that being a Mom is a difficult job…it’s not a 9 to 5 situation. There’s no overtime pay, no vacation days, no 401(k) matching contributions, and no benefits package. And, a mom never gets to retire. Had my mom been paid for all her work, she would have been a millionaire, many times.

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Moms have plenty of sleepless nights, mountains of laundry to fold, lots of messes to clean up, runny noses to wipe, diapers to change, and an endless list of things to worry about.

As any mother can tell you, the chance to love, shape, guide, protect and nurture a growing human is, quite literally, the opportunity of a lifetime. Raising a child stands apart as one of life’s biggest responsibilities and greatest rewards.

Today, we joyfully celebrate Mother’s Day, but we also know that every day should be an occasion to thank the women who raised us, encouraged us and loved us – often in spite of ourselves.

Mother’s Day was first celebrated in the United States in 1908, when social activist Anna Jarvis held a memorial for her late mother in West Virginia. Six years later, President Woodrow Wilson signed a proclamation designating Mother’s Day as an official national holiday.

Without a mother’s love, each of us would be a lesser person, a paler reflection of our current self. If you’re lucky enough to have a mother who is still living, take a moment to thank her for everything she has done for you. Make her favorite breakfast, wash her car, take her out to dinner or just spend the day with her, give her a bouquet of flowers or write her a personal note. Take the time to thank her and to let her know how much you appreciate her love, sacrifice and support.

If your Mom is no longer living, consider paying tribute to her in whatever way is most meaningful to you and your family. That might mean sharing stories with loved ones, visiting the cemetery, or doing something special for someone.

The role of mothers in American society is changing. According to the Pew Research Center, 72 percent of mothers currently work full-time or part-time. Fifty years ago, the total was about 50 percent.

Two-income households have become the norm, which means more mothers are in the workplace than ever before. They’re making an impact and encouraging employers to be more flexible and more attuned to the changing needs of working parents.

A recent study of 2,000 working mothers with children between the ages of 5 and 12 found that the average working mom in the United States clocks an astounding 98 hours per week. Her day typically starts at 6:23 a.m. and ends at 8:31 p.m. The study found that the working moms get an average of an hour and seven minutes to herself each day.

As any mother can tell you, once you have a child, your life will quite literally never be the same. There’s a whole other level of responsibility that drives your decisions and shapes your behavior, 24/7. Becoming a parent is a life-altering experience, since it requires you to think about someone other than yourself and to put another person’s best interests above your own.

One thing is certain: it’s impossible to pay our mothers back for the priceless gifts they have given us. There is no algorithm, no calculus and no mathematical formula to calculate our appreciation for decades of love and sacrifice.

Regardless of how you plan to celebrate Mother’s Day today, be sure to offer a special, heartfelt “thank you” to all the mothers in your life. Happy Mother’s Day.