By Angela Sutherland
Let’s be honest, there’s a big chunk of consumerism surrounding Mother’s Day.
There are premium flowers, special menus at the café, and pamper specials as far as the hot stones can reach.
However, if we step away from the superficial gifts and the Hallmark clichés, Mother’s Day is a significant day filled with intangibles that make it one of the most important days of the year.
Mother’s Day originated as a day to celebrate and honour the love, extra time and hard work mothers put in. And though technology and societal changes have completely turned the typical role of ‘mother’ on its head in the last few decades, we’ve still got a mighty tough role to fill. Every … Single … Day.
But once a year, those little beings that made us mamas have the opportunity to say ‘thanks’. And though a spa voucher is HUGELY appreciated (ahem, any partners reading?!), that is only half of the occasion.
Because it’s the actions that DON’T involve buying anything that matter – both for the bambino and the mama.
For the bambino …
Kids are generally egocentric little things, and quite rightly so. They need us to love, care, provide for and nurture them, which we all do until our hearts burst. But Mother’s Day provides a wonderful opportunity for them to experience, learn about and show gratitude. It allows them the chance to take some time and think about how special you are, about how much they treasure your relationship, and how they appreciate everything you do. Yes, there is also your birthday, but kids instantly associate that word with balloons, parties and cake, so it has a completely different meaning for them.
We always put ourselves at the bottom of the list and kids at the top, so it’s a chance for kids to understand that sometimes someone else comes first. So now you can take that breakfast in bed and know that you are also giving your child a valuable life lesson at the same time.
Mother’s Day also gives them the chance to express their feelings and experience self-expression. They can practice writing skills, creative skills and learn how to put their thoughts and emotions into a gift. You cannot create these things on a screen and you cannot do this with a shop-bought gift. Creating handmade cards and gifts not only allow a child to show those loved ones how much they are loved, they also become treasured memories to look back on (because, we ALL have a box of handmade gifts ferreted away somewhere!).
And lastly, Mother’s Day is a cherished day of building happy memories for the whole family. A happy childhood is make up of small moments of connection, of love and of spending time as a family. Mother’s Day is the perfect opportunity to show kids how to do love as well as to be loved.
For the mama …
We always say we will value ourselves more; we will practice self-love and not feel guilty about taking time out for ourselves. But in reality, many mamas find this incredibly hard to do. If you are one of those that really struggle to put yourself top of the list, Mother’s Day is the perfect time to stop the juggle for a moment and know that it’s OK to take time out for yourself, and it’s OK to be CELEBRATED.
Want to spend the morning on the couch as the kids attempt to make you pancakes? Absolutely.
Prefer to take a long walk by yourself followed by a coffee and a good book? Go for it, girl.
Or maybe a day out with the family at the beach? Totally your choice.
It is not selfish, it is teaching your child that you value yourself, and they will in-turn learn to value themselves too.
So, enjoy the handmade cards, savour the heartfelt cups of tea, and in that moment be the special, cherished mama that you are.