To my son,
As another Mother’s Day looms, I want to tell you why I don’t celebrate this day. I often get strange looks from people when I tell them this, but to me, Mother’s Day and what it stands for is simply not enough to recognise all I do for you.
I know at the moment you’re only two, so really Mother’s Day is just another day in your universe. But when you grow older and ask me this question, I’d like to be able to explain why. This answer will impact on your relationship with your spouse and how you end up seeing our roles in making you the man you will become.
I don’t celebrate Mother’s Day. Not because I don’t want breakfast in bed (I get it on the weekend anyway from your dad), or to be spoiled with gifts, but because I want to be loved and appreciated by you every day, not just Mother’s day. I would rather be the recipient of warm hugs, cuddles and happy family lunches every day than waiting for the one day in the year for you and dad to show you love and care for me.
Sure, I like breakfast in bed, but in actual truth I don’t stop being a mother on Mother’s Day. If anything my day simply goes on like any other day; I still get up, get you ready, clean and cook. So if I don’t stop being a mother, and I’m thanked for all my sacrifices only one day a year, why can’t it be Mother’s Day daily, so you’ll always notice and appreciate all the things I do for you?
Being a mother is extremely hard work. I know you don’t really have the capacity to notice it now, and that’s why I tell you to thank me when I do something for you. And when you got that concept and now tell me “danku mamie” in your little voice, my heart swells with pride and joy. I carried and nourished an entire human being – yes, you – in my womb for nine months, I cried when I saw the scans and was relieved when they told me you had 10 fingers and 10 toes (that’s a story for another day). I gave birth while suffering through unspeakable pain (did I mention I was in labour for almost four days … and yes, you will be hearing about it for a very long time), sacrificed sleep when you were ill and wanted to cuddle and be comforted. I left my job because I couldn’t bear to leave you. I also know that you won’t be my little boy forever, so I’d like to selfishly claim you for as long as I can!
The real point of this letter is that while you’re becoming a big boy, I’m growing that bit older every day (already my knees are creaking, just a little, as I play football with you … uh-oh). And a time will come when your life will become so busy that I won’t hear from you as often as I’d like. So please don’t wait for Mother’s Day to spend time with me; I’d like to hear your voice over the phone, when you’re still interested in what I think and how my day was. I want you to always be as happy to see me as you are now.
I want to be your first SOS, not the last person on your list. I want you to be able to come to me with any worry, and I promise to listen without any judgement (but do forgive my rare emotional outburst – they come from the fact that I want to protect you from everything bad in this world!).
So please don’t wait for Mother’s Day to give me a hug and tell me you love me and recognise my efforts. I want you to do that every day. That’s why I don’t celebrate Mother’s Day, because I don’t think just 24 hours of acknowledgement are enough to show the world how important we really are.
Your loving mother