“Mothers have the ability to liberate by love or, by neglect, to imprison. They’re our first teachers; they are our first loves.” Dr. Maya Angelou
Children are the anchors that hold a mother to life. Sophocles
To describe my mother would be to write about a hurricane in its perfect power. Or the climbing, falling colors of a rainbow. Maya Angelou
Having kids — the responsibility of rearing good, kind, ethical, responsible human beings — is the biggest job anyone can embark on. Maria Shriver
[Motherhood is] the biggest gamble in the world. It is the glorious life force. It’s huge and scary, it’s an act of infinite optimism. Gilda Radner
Happy Mother’s Day: Why does it matter? There is an African saying: It takes a breast for a child to know its mother and it takes a mother for a child to know its father. The point made here is that our foundation begins with that first connection with a mother figure, and that relationship informs our history and potentially our future and legacy. On Sunday, May 13, daughters and sons around the US will gather to celebrate the women who have loved, nurtured and encouraged their growth. Not all will be our birth mothers because mothering demands a lot more from us and birthing a child is but the first step to a lifetime of trials, tribulations and celebrations. While devotion in motherhood doesn’t guarantee our kids will have a successful or even a happy childhood, on Sunday, many of us will turn our attention, with fond memories, to the special yet complex relationships we had/have with our mothers because it matters.
Mother’s Day matters because it gives us an opportunity to stop and applaud the caregivers who know us intimately; they know our strengths, weaknesses, fears and successes. They have carried us in our darkest, sickest hour and cheered us on to our dreams. They have shown us tough love when we needed a wake-up call and inspired us to achieve. Some have broken our hearts into a thousand pieces and forced us to turn within and develop a focus or spiritual anchor. Some have made us want to flaunt our love or fault it in myriad ways. Through it all, our mothers have been a presence, in some capacity, in our lives. I would be remiss if I were to pretend that motherhood is all soft baby skin, first steps and graduations. It is much more than those important milestones because it is a relationship that evolves and follows us throughout our lifetime, building memories and magic that follow us to our graves.
A Story: Advice A Mother Would Give
“Mother, what is water?” asked the baby fish of the mother fish.
“Water is what you swim in. Water is what you’re mostly made of.”
“But where is it?”
“All around you.”
“But I can’t see it,” said the baby.
“Of course you can.”
“And I’m made of water?”
“And after I die..?”
“You go back to being water,” said the mother.
“Grown don’t mean nothing to a mother. A child is a child. They get bigger, older, but grown. In my heart it don’t mean a thing.” Toni Morrison
I believe the choice to become a mother is the choice to become one of the greatest spiritual teachers there is. Oprah
I remember my mother’s prayers and they have always followed me. They have clung to me all my life. Abraham Lincoln
There’s no way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a good one. Jill Churchill
Being a mother is not about what you gave up to have a child, but what you’ve gained from having one. Sunny Gupta.
Mother’s Day matters because it forces us to consider the many permutations that define mothering; some of our relationships with our mothers are fraught with difficult moments, some tempered by mental illness, some built on divine exchanges, and others offering no memories whatsoever because of circumstances that led to an abbreviated childhood or the death of a loved one. All in all, we were raised by Moms who loved or loathed us and coming to terms with our personal history matters because facing it is where the healing and growth can begin. My relationship with my mother is/was not perfect. We had gaps in our relationship because of her health and, when we were together, there was an urgency that seemed to hover in the air as she flitted from one commitment to another exploring her interests, helping others and, from time to time, pausing to teach/show us what she knew. She was a skilled seamstress, gourmet chef, and gardener. Because of my mom, I developed an early love for travel and storytelling. She was very good at describing, in great detail, some of the places she had visited and sharing her dreams for us – her children.
Mother’s Day matters to me because Mom instilled in me a love for gardening; she shared her love for beautiful tropical blooms with exotic names like Frangipani, Bougainvillea, Centaurea, Jacaranda, Gaillardia and many, many more. I’ve often said that my mother’s flowers were like children; they were bright, capricious, eager to please, and temperamental… She gave them much attention and, from an early age, there was an unspoken understanding that they held a high place in her inner creative world. Growing flowers gave her a venue and, indirectly, a voice to express her unfulfilled dreams and desires. She loved theater, music and drama and because she was born into a royal family, a culture, and generation that looked caustically at such inclinations, she settled for a more traditional role. Periodically, she would follow her heart’s flame and perform on TV or local radio to the chagrin of my Dad and their highbrow friends…
My Mom was full of fire in so many ways; good and not so good. I speak about her in the past tense now even though she is alive, you might wonder. WHY? Because she can no longer do the things she loves … she had a massive stroke 20+ years ago and while she recovered, part of her body is paralyzed and her memory is impaired. She recognizes my oldest brother but has only intermittent recollections of her other four children, including me. Every year, when I celebrate Mother’s Day, it is bittersweet because I am reminded that my Dad passed away on May 9th and that my Mother is somewhat lost to me because of her health. I love my parents and cherish my memories of them so, I light a candle and make a donation to honor my Mom and Dad. Mother’s Day matters because I am reminded of the frailty of our human existence and how important it is to be fully present in our children’s lives in every way we can.
READ: Maya Angelou Writes of Mothers and Daughters: Reconciliation and Unconditional Love
Alice Walker on motherhood and estrangement from her only child
Motivation Mondays: Celebrate Mother’s Day! #mothersday
My Mother by Ann Taylor
Who sat and watched my infant head
When sleeping on my cradle bed,
And tears of sweet affection shed?
When pain and sickness made me cry,
Who gazed upon my heavy eye,
And wept for fear that I should die?
Who taught my infant lips to pray
And love God’s holy book and day,
And walk in wisdom’s pleasant way?
My Mother. Cont’d below
The details for Motivation Mondays are below. Join in! The themes for APR 2018/MAY 2018 are:
03/04 – Women’s History Month, National Nutrition Month, Irish-American Heritage Month, American Red Cross Month, 08 International Women’s Day, World Kidney Day, 04 Academy Awards
03/11 – 11 Daylight Savings, 14 Pi Day, 15 World Consumer Rights Day, 17 St Patrick’s Day
03/18 – 19 St Joseph, 20 International Day of Happiness, 21 World poetry Day, 22 World Water day, 24 Earth Hour
03/25 – Palm Sunday, 29 Holy Thursday, 30 Good Friday, 31 Passover
05/06 – TBD
05/13 – HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY
Are You Looking for Ways to Stay Creative in 2018?
– Join the Daily Post Post-a-day or Post-a-week Challenge.
— Join the BlogHer Writing Lab
“So true motherhood is accepting that everything needs to be cared for, not just your own child.” Alice Walker
[My mother] had handed down respect for the possibilities—and the will to grasp them. Alice Walker
In giving birth to our babies, we may find that we give birth to new possibilities within ourselves. Myla and Jon Kabat-Zinn
When you are a mother, you are never really alone in your thoughts. A mother always has to think twice, once for herself and once for her child. Sophia Loren
I realized when you look at your mother, you are looking at the purest love you will ever know. Mitch Albom
How have Mothers motivated us throughout the ages and why does it matter? If you come from one of the top five countries for women (Finland, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Denmark) and raising children, (Canada, Finland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark) you are very fortunate indeed. However, women around the world juggle multiple demands in their households and, to the untrained eye, it might seem magical or even easy to watch how mothers run their households. Some women raise their kids in homes torn apart by domestic violence or sexual abuse, some in homeless shelters, and many on a shoestring budget. They often stay in Godforsaken situations for the sake of their children, and they power through the horror show that marks their daily lives because they are determined to hold up even the faintest hope for their children’s path to freedom and survival. Mother’s Day matters because statistics show that for every woman who walks out alive from a violent relationship, 3 others are killed. For every child that survives abuse, 4 die. 1 in 4 women experience sexual assault in their lifetime and some are/were our mothers.
Mother’s day matters because it reminds us to work harder to curtail such violence against women and children and to rise above our own experiences so our children can build better lives of their own… The circle of life can lift us out of the doldrums and plant us squarely in a better place or, if we don’t fight for more, it can keep us in bondage to repeat the cycle of pain and suffering. As mothers, daughters, stepmoms, adopted moms, grandmothers and aunts, we owe it to our progeny to fight for a richer, safer legacy for our children. Around the world, Moms take great risks, perform endless chores and time consuming tasks to accomplish their household goals daily. As a mom of twin daughters, I take my role seriously and cherish the time I spend with them. I am not perfect but, my daughters know I would give every ounce of breath in my body for them. They encourage me, push me to be my best self and remind me of why mothers matter. For this Mother’s Day, I want to give thanks and praise to all the Moms in the world; they come in all shapes and sizes, do the heavy lifting as chief executives of their homes, and carry on even when their efforts aren’t always applauded. I wish all of you a very happy, healthy and productive Mother’s Day! Do celebrate the Moms in YOUR life. Happy Mother’s Day!
My Mother by Ann Taylor
Affectionate and kind to thee,
Who wast so very kind to me,
Ah, no! the thought I cannot bear,
And if God please my life to spare
I hope I shall reward they care,
When thou art feeble, old and grey,
My healthy arm shall be thy stay,
And I will soothe thy pains away,
My Mother. Poem by Ann Taylor via poemhunter.com
Have a happy, peaceful and productive week ahead!
Any Zen Antics stories via
Positive Motivation Tip: Motherhood teaches us to give and receive… stay open to the experience.
Motivation Mondays is open to anyone who wishes to share a motivational quote, photo, personal challenge or a post that encourages others to start the week on an upbeat note.
Basic Instructions: Each week, I will have a motivation word to help us create a response. (See listed words for the months above/below)
Email address: You may email or share your post as a comment and I will add it to the round-up of related posts. email it to: contact(@)mirthandmotivation(.)com
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Badge: – I created a fun badge using PicMonkey’s free photo editing tools. You can create your own, use WordPress’ integrated tool on your blog or you are welcome to use mine. (see dedicated page)
Tag: – Motivation Mondays
Hashtag: – #MotvnM
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