Mother’s Day is just around the corner. And there is SO much to be said about this holiday. As you very well know, it honors our Mom’s. Yes. The person who carried us for nine months and then brought our little selves right into this world. Most of them, exclaiming at the time of our births… “Well thank goodness THAT thing is finally out of me.”
The day itself is full of history and her-stories.
In the U.S., we have a couple of women who are responsible for the “birth” of the holiday.
Let’s start with Julia Ward. She was a female activist, writer and poet. She also wrote a little song, called the “Battle Hymn of the Republic.” In 1870, Julia suggested a day of peace… and advocated other women to stand up against the war. As a result… she was able to get Boston to recognize mothers on the second Sunday of June. (I’m not sure how it went from “Women for Peace” to “Mom’s are Awesome”…. but that is the jump it took.)
Then there was Anna Jarvis. She never had any children of her own. But Anna’s dear old Mom thought it would be a good idea to have a day dedicated “just for Moms.” So Anna began a tireless campaign to carry out her Mother’s wishes. After much ado…. she worked up a big bunch of gusto on this. And, on May 8th, 1914 President Woodrow Wilson signed a Joint Resolution designating the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day. Anna and her Ma. Rocking the Day.
But Mother’s Day goes way, way back. In Greek mythology…. there were these joyous spring festivals. There were held in honor of the maternal goddess called Rhea. She was the wife of Cronus. Rhea was believed to be the mother of many deities. I miss the days of Goddess Festivals. That’s when we had it right.
Then, in 250 B.C…. those ancient Romans celebrated a spring festival called, Hilaria. This celebration was dedicated to a mother goddess named, Cybele. It happened on the Ides of March. And. Her followers would make offerings at the temple. They also held parades, played games and had masquerades. That party…. lasted three days.
So all of this goes way back. Probably, in fact, to when women started having babies… which has been since the begin of civilization. Huzzzahh for those Mom’s.
The youngest Mother on record, was 5 years old (Peru), and the oldest was 70 (India). That is REALLY young and really old… to be having a baby.
There is a woman named Jayne Bleackley. Like… bleak. She gets the “Got Busy” award, I think. She gave birth to her son on September 3, 1999. Then only 208 days later gave birth to her daughter … on March 30, 2000. I’ll do the math for you: that is 6.8 months. Wahhhhh. Double Wah.
And let’s not forget Elizabeth Ann Buttle. The woman who can wait. She gave birth to her first child (a girl) May 19,1956. Then when she was 60 years-old, she gave birth to her son on November 20, 1997. That makes big sissy about 41 years and 6 months older.
There is much more to share about Mother’s Day. While I am not a Mother on my own right, I do have 2 step-sons and 5 grand kids. And of course, I had a wonderful mother, who I miss very much.
Yes, we all have a mother. Hopefully, a good Mom. And. Of course … some of YOU are wonderful mothers too.
Albeit a little early for the holiday, I just want to say “Thanks” to all the Moms out there. For all you do. You comforters, teachers, doctors, counselors, cooks, chauffeurs, friends, advisors, supporters, companions, leaders, and guides. And so much more. To YOU. A big, big thanks.
But most importantly, perhaps…. we should carry this gratitude for those wonderful mothers, every single day of the year. And not just once, in May.
“Mothers and their children are in a category all their own. There’s no bond so strong in the entire world. No love so instantaneous and forgiving.”
―Gail Tsukiyama, Dreaming Water
“As mothers and daughters, we are connected with one another. My mother is the bones of my spine, keeping me straight and true. She is my blood, making sure it runs rich and strong. She is the beating of my heart. I cannot now imagine a life without her.”
―Kristin Hannah, Summer Island
“Mom had the kind of love for her that you could feel, like it was part of the atmosphere.”
―Peter Abrahams, Down the Rabbit Hole