To all on Mother's Day:
To all who find themselves in a parenting role - raising other people’s children - when you weren’t expecting to.
To all foster parents, who love on repeat and give pieces of their hearts to so many even when its not immediately reciprocated.
To all moms that are far away from children, due to incarceration, jobs that require travel, work that requires service to your country, or any separation from your children that is out of your control.
To all moms that have been torn away from your children because of tension and conflict in your government or due to war or unrest in your country.
To all dads that find themselves in a situation - whether as a single parent, widow or a divorcee - left to figure out how to braid hair, navigate the tampon aisle and teach boys how to be in touch with their emotions.
To all who have wished for, ached for and grieved for babies that never were or haven’t been yet (or that never took a breath).
To all who don't quite know how to express your love or appreciation for your own mother but feel immense thankfulness each and every day.
To all who have held for a few moments or a few months or too few precious years and then lost.
To all who have no desire to be a parent, but who mentor and enrich the lives of others, regardless.
To those who have been blessed with differently wired or uniquely abled children who wish for an easier road, but still revel in the beauty of parenthood.
To all those that cringe at the word mom or mama because they are gender expansive or a trans parent but keep on pushing the boundaries of being accepted by others.
To all who have lost their own mother or mother figure and desperately miss their presence and wisdom.
To all young mothers who have been surprised by a pregnancy and navigated their decision, with what was right for them at the time.
To all who live in a world where the relationship with your mother or daughter is strained, pained and tense.
To all mamas who wake up every day terrified that you’re doing it wrong but keep on going.
To all who lead the way with what appears to be all of the answers yet quietly wish for more support.
To all mothers who are going it alone and carrying the weight of the world on just two shoulders.
To all who parent under a blanket of doubt each and every time a decision is made, or a shroud of confusion or struggle with the role of mothering.
To all those that are given a second chance to raise littles, even when that means it’s under someone else’s watchful eye.
To all who show up and support neighbors, refugees and co-workers with words of encouragement and physical offers of help as they seek to raise their family.
It hurts my heart a little to think of all of my friends for whom Mother's Day is a difficult one. It also bothers me to know that many individuals don't "qualify" to celebrate Mother's Day even though they are SO instrumental in the very thing we are celebrating mothers FOR.
I totally understand why Mother's Day is something we celebrate, but I also believe we should all be honored and acknowledged for the part we play in this great big world - each and every day -regardless of what title has been bestowed on us by our situation and by society.
If you look up "what are the attributes of a good mother", you might find:
creative, hard worker, patient, tolerant, funny, forgiving, kind, compassionate, humility, strong, responsible, loving, resilient (and the list goes on)
May you see yourself in that list of attributes regardless of whether you consider yourself a mama. We are all capable of choosing impact, one little action at a time, when we make the effort to "mother" each other through this thing called life. My wish for you is that you feel cherished today for the role you play in the lives of others - no matter how that looks, or how the world sees you. My wish for you is that you choose the act of mothering as you encounter other humans along your journey, and on repeat.
Happy Mother's Day!