Happy Mother's Day! Today is a day that honors our mother, the person who not only gave birth to us, but molded us to into who we are today.
Friday, I had the pleasure of being invited to my son's new day facility, at United Cerebral Palsy. They had a luncheon to honor the mothers of the adults with cerebral palsy who attend their program. My son Morris (who is now 21) gave me a card and a pin that said, "My son loves me." The workers (all disabled, most in wheelchairs) gave out fake flowers that were made to pin on our clothes. There was a program from the choir (a sing-along) and a video of the people who attend UCP.
It was amazing to watch the faces of the disabled men and women, as they sang and laughed, all with a smile on their face. Despite their challenges to walk and talk and even move, they were all so happy. My son and I laughed and clapped as they performed and then were served a wonderful lunch. (My son had his feeding bag put on so he could "eat" with me). It made me think that people who complain how unhappy they are should take the opportunity to visit those who are so much less fortunate than they, those who cannot walk, talk, many can not even move.
I would be remiss in not mentioning those Mothers who have had the terrible grief of losing a child. Two of my closest friends lost their sons, and there are no words or expression of love that can remedy their sorrow. Every day I wish that I could bring back their children, every day I wish that I can help to ease their pain, and I recognize that each holiday, especially Mother’s Day brings a new sense of pain to their fragile life.
If you are a mother, you should be so especially grateful if your children are alive and healthy. Do not take for granted the small things in life, for you never know what the future can bring. Give your children the strength needed to be independent, to learn to support themselves and be their own individuals. It may seem easier to just hand them money or sustain them, but you are only doing your job if you do the hardest thing of all, let them go out in the world and learn how to survive. You will not be around forever, the best gift you can give your child is to teach them to be strong and self-sufficient.
If you are a child, make sure you make each Mother’s Day special for your mom. Show her how much you love her, for you never know what time brings and if you will have the opportunity to show her your love next year. Having lost my mother 22 years ago this month, I wish I could tell her one last time how thankful I was to have her as my mother, for teaching me independence and most importantly, for letting me leave the nest and become self sufficient.
Please do not forget to tell your mother that she is your hero, she was not only the person to give you life, but she gave you the hardest gift of all, the wings to leave the nest.