Mother’s Day is special for a variety of reasons; the most important one being that we get to celebrate the most important woman in our lives. Though I’m a firm believer in celebrating people special to us everyday, Mother’s Day is a day exclusively dedicated to cherishing moms, which makes it unique. Given the current circumstances, all of us have become acutely aware of our privileges and blessings; one of the greatest ones being around our mothers. For those of us who’re not around our mothers at this point of time, I know it’s hard but we can always make her feel special even when we’re not around.
Over the years, Mother’s Day celebrations have changed drastically. Before the internet took over our lives, we’d dutifully make cards for our mommies. The nicer ones of us went an extra mile and even baked a cake. Then, happened the rise of Facebook , Instagram and eventually, Snapchat and our physical gestures took a backseat. Mother’s Day became an online event with many of us creating posts specially dedicated to our mothers, telling the world how much we love and appreciate our mothers.
We’re creatures driven by capitalism and that became evident in our celebrations as well. Archie’s cards and gifts became the standard way of telling someone how much they mean to us. Gone were handmade cards and cakes and the small gestures that made Mother’s Day what it was. A meaningful holiday was hijacked by modern corporatisation.
The sentiment behind Mother’s Day lost its real value. While everyone likes a little indulgence, it’s a universally known fact that giving someone your time and undivided attention is everyone’s favourite love language. Specially when it comes to Indian mothers, nothing makes them happier than their children saving money.
We must pause and reflect on how and why Mother’s Day originated and it’s significant impact on highlighting reproductive labour and community care. Anna Jarvis can be credited for campaigning for celebrating motherhood. Jarvis started this in 1905 after the death of her own mother, an activist and community leader who cared for wounded soldiers during the U.S. Civil War. Jarvis constantly strived for US to recognise Mother’s Day as a national holiday to provide dignity to the labour undertaken by caretakers, which were primarily mothers.
The real idea behind Mother’s day is dignifying the effort and labour that a mother puts into taking care of her children and her home, instead of dismissing it as her ‘duty‘.
Here are some ways in which you can actually create a difference in your mother’s life:
- SPEND TIME TOGETHER: It’s easy to get carried away by life and the innumerable responsibilities it brings us but we must consciously make an effort to put a stop to the madness at times, take a step back and simply go back to where we came from. Spend time with your mother, ask her how her day was, listen to her and tell her something about your life. Conversations like these count the most not just on Mother’s Day but everyday.
- PREPARE MEALS FOR HER: Though one can never beat their mom’s cooking, our mothers love a break from their kitchen and own cooking. With the lockdown turning many of us into chefs in our own right, prepare a meal that you think she’d love. Try something different; something that she doesn’t know how to cook or makes on the regular. Make this a weekly activity.
- HAVE A VIRTUAL GAME NIGHTS RITUAL: Yes, yes, we know that you’d kill if you had to spend an extra hour on Zoom. But for those who are away from their mothers this is a perfect idea. Rope in your family members and play a quiz on ‘Who- Knows-Mom-the-Best’ this Mother’s Day. To keep things fun, you can switch the games every week. Mothers sure will love the attention and get a bit teary-eyed even on how much we remember about her in detail. For those of you who are with their mothers currently, bring out the good old board games and have a family night.
- TAKE AN ONLINE COOKING CLASS: With a virtual cooking class, the entire family can pitch in for her Mother’s Day brunch or dinner. If your mother enjoys these, take these classes every once in a while, so that both of you can learn something new.
- MAKE HER TRY SOMETHING NEW: Chances are your mom has always wanted to do something but is probably too shy to try it out or has put it off for for the longest while due to work and responsibilities. It might be dance, music, an art form, cooking or something else. Help her get over that shyness and embrace learning.
- BE HER TECH GURU: Mothers get lonelier as we get more and more involved in our lives. Don’t lose patience with them as they struggle with their phones and figuring out the internet. Just as we maintain most of our connections through the virtual world, our parents also seek comfort through technology.
- TELL HER HOW MUCH YOU LOVE HER: Expressing emotions can be a battle for a lot of us. Even though we love people, we find it hard to just say it. But this Mother’s Day, break this pattern. Go hug your mom and actually tell her how much she means to you. It might get awkward, it will also lead to a few tears surely but it’ll be worth it.
As we grow and become older, life takes over and we slowly get lost in the great scheme of things. But, we mustn’t forget that for our mothers and even for our children, we’re the most important people. Celebrating and cherishing these relationships is not just necessary but a lot of fun, as we discover something new each time, not just in them but also in us.