Mother's Day is coming up.
Lanet and I know it's protocol for a women's website to address this. We could do a cute printable, a fun craft, maybe a breakfast the kids can make?
Lanet passed the buck to me, claiming that she doesn't need to be involved. She's not a mom. I am.
And, being that I (Nellie) am the mother of two, this seemed reasonable... so the task became mine. Sit down and write a post, or a craft, or a diy honoring mothers. You know, something traditional.
But... I don't know exactly what to put together. I just don't feel any of the "traditional" Mother's Day options for bloggers matches what I want to put out to the world. Not that there's anything wrong with them; I love them, actually. Adorable printables kids can attach to flowers or presents are great! Simple recipes I can "accidentally" leave somewhere the kids see, so I might get something edible for breakfast (although my kids have actually become pretty great cooks).
But...Mother's Day is more than all that.
It shouldn't be just about American mothers.
Don't misunderstand me, Mother's Day is important and should be recognized as such. I intend to abuse it in all of it's glory with breakfast in bed, small trinkets of gifts, undying proclomations of love from my children, and the whole thing! I love Levi making a mess in the kitchen while making me pancakes. Or Katie's Mother's Day card. I wouldn't give those up! And I'm glad I don't need to.
But, when I step back and look at Mother's Day from the perspective of women in general, particularly women around the world...it has such a more profound meaning to me.
I've heard again and again that being a mother is hard. That is true, absolutely! But...
...it's a matter of perspective, wouldn't you say?
There are days where raising a 16 year old girl feels like the hardest thing I've ever done. Or ever will do. And there are days when my 11 year old son is struggling... and life feels unnecessarily difficult. There are days when my children are hurting, in real ways, and life feels just too hard.
Can I really say that it's hard? No, no I can't.
Being a mother when my children are starving...is hard.
Watching my sons head off to civil war before their voices even change...is hard.
Knowing my girls will be raised with no hope of an education...is hard.
Raising children in a refugee camp...is hard.
Giving birth to children knowing that they might soon die from disease and starvation...is hard.
Being a mother who has lost her children to tragedy...is hard.
Wishing with all my might to be a mother, and not being able to...is hard.
I am reminded again that this holiday is difficult, or non-existent in some cases, for so many women. So many that want to have chidlren, but can't. Many that, through no choice of their own, experience pain, sorrow, and hardship while raising their children. Many that have had tragedy impact their experience as a mother. For so many women, this holiday doesn't bring joy and celebration but pain and sorrow.
No, my experience of motherhood is not hard. I am blessed.
Mother's Day is just a bonus for me.
Mother's Day is another of my added blessings.
Mother's Day is one more celebration I can participate in.
Because motherhood to me is a joy, and I will only claim joy.
But, I will not celebrate before I remember all that I have, all that I can give, and all that I need to be mindful of.
I do not have hardships I have the right to mention next to those I just listed. My hardships are another woman's dreams. Mother's Day is not needed for me in the same way it is needed for those women. It is needed by the mothers who for many, many hard reasons...can't enjoy it or experience it. Mother's Day is too difficult for them. Mother's Day does not live in their world. Those are the ones that truly need it the most. They are the ones who need someone to honor them for trying. For waking up each day and living through hard days. For living through the pain. And for striving to be the best mothers they can be...even when it is truly, frightfully hard.
And to you dear woman,
Although you may not ever be able to read this, Happy Mother's Day. You are my hero. I read the stories of your suffering on the news, I see what is happening in your country, in your family...and it makes me realize how very, very blessed I am. I wish I could bottle up a bit of my blessings and send them to you with the greatest hugs that I can! But, I want you to know that I am thankful for you and recognize the hard work you are doing. I realize that Mother's Day is not my right, it is not mine to take, it isn't something I earned...it is a day which I have been blessed to be able to experience, to enjoy. And today, I want you to know that you are being prayed for, thought of...and these moments of mine are sweeter because I realize how very special they are. I hope that in some small way this Sunday, you feel an extra bit of love and kindness. You deserve it. You are the world's unspoken hero, dear beautiful woman!
And so, I salute those of you that take this Mother's Day, children or none, hardship or none, sorrow or joy...and bring about hope and change in a young life.
To those of you that give of yourselves to make your children's lives a better place...Happy Mother's Day.
To those of you that care for children so their mothers can work...Happy Mother's Day.
To those of you that school our children each and every day...Happy Mother's Day.
To those family members that provide care and support...Happy Mother's Day.
To my neighbors that are mindful of my children as they get off the bus...Happy Mother's Day.
You are part of my blessing today. I share the joy of my children with you. And, with everything I am...I pray that other women the world around can find care and support like I have in some fashion or form. And, I pray that we here at NellieBellie...can have a very, very small role in that. And we will. Believe me...we will.