Walking past a display of pink and white cards last week at Target, I noticed that Mother’s Day falls the day after graduation. I pondered this for a minute and snickered out loud. Mother’s Day? One whole day devoted to appreciating moms that toil year round? Wow.
I thought about my own mother, and how we had both almost died during birth in an emergency C-section so harrowing it could have been a plot line for “ER” or “Grey’s Anatomy”. Instead, we persevered, me weighing a tad over 5 pounds and my mother proud, but exhausted.
She was a stay-at-home mom, and we kids reaped the benefits of having mom at home and available. We were fed home-cooked meals every night, ferried to various lessons and activities, chaperoned on school field trips and photographed at every recital and play.
I guess my point is, don’t moms deserve to be appreciated every day?
I think Mother’s Day is great and the sentiment is nice, but imagine how great your mom would feel if you gave her a card on any random day or sent her roses “just because.”
Since I became a mother myself, the dynamic between my mom and I has changed. I began to realize what it was like to walk in her shoes, the ones I’d never given a second thought to before. They felt a little strange, so I called for advice. The baby has a fever – should I call the doctor? She won’t stop crying – is that normal?
Suddenly mom became more than my mom. She became a counselor, an adviser, and since I have been in college, my personal cheerleader. I still call her when I have a bad day, when I want to tell her a funny story only she will appreciate or just when I need to hear her say, “You’ll be okay,” which is more often than not at times.
Most employees get weekends and holidays off. Moms do not. They are on the clock like surgeons, jumping out of bed when their pagers go off (or in this case, when the baby cries). Moms are summoned to bedsides to scare away monsters, awakened at the crack of dawn to play Batman or reminded that they need to make two dozen cookies for the bake sale that was forgotten about until the night before.
Being a mom is selfless, difficult and tiring. There aren’t benefits or a retirement package. Moms don’t get to lay around and read magazines while drinking fruity cocktails and relaxing poolside when their job is “done.” You see, a mom’s work is never done, not when those kids turn 18 or 30 or 40. There may be no more field trips, but a mother is always a mother.
Think about all the times your mom has been there for you, made you laugh, lifted you up or hung an A exam on the refrigerator (even though you are grown now). Nothing warms my heart like reassurance from mom, because if mom believes in me, then I have an easier time believing in myself.
My mom already told me when I graduate and walk across that stage, she’ll be clapping louder than anyone. I believe her, but I also believe that she deserves a round of applause, too.
So don’t wait all year until Mother’s Day to let your mom know how much she means to you. Any old day is an opportunity to let her know how much you care. And thank her for putting up with you during those teenage years!
Christi Aldridge is a senior strategic communication major from Hillsboro.