When my parents were married in early 1970’s my Mother was halfway through her Master’s Degree in Humanities. But she stopped at that point so that she could support my Dad’s post-graduate schooling for his career. I was born less than 2 years later.
After a number of years and four additional children my Mom would sometimes go to professional conferences with my Dad and be the only wife there who did not have a career of her own. And was often treated as if “she just must not be smart enough to do something with her life.” Because to some, nurturing 5 brilliant minds wasn’t “good enough.”
In reality my Mom put that Humanities degree to work! She took us on field trips to the local public library, the Nutcracker ballet, plays by Shakespeare, and the Musee d’Orsay to name just a few. [She still takes me on nice field trips!] And guess what I got my own degree in? Humanities from her alma mater.
Today, she’d probably have finished that degree and then still chose to be a stay-at-home mom. I’m grateful to my generation for a few more options and a little less angst about those personal choices.
But to my Mom I say:
Thank you for not succumbing to the pressure of your generation and for being a stay-at-home mom when it definitely wasn’t cool.
Thank you for giving me siblings [and for putting up with us] who are now my best friends.
Thank you for teaching me to SEW so that one day when I grew up and started a blog, I would have something to write about [just kidding]. Thank you for giving me a creative outlet that has brought sanity amid my own stay-at-home mothering chaos.
A couple of other Mother’s Day thoughts:
I realize that Mother’s Day is a day of sadness for some because a mother, or the opportunity to be one, is not there. For that I have no solution or explanation other than to turn to the One who comforts when nothing else can.
And please don’t let Mother’s Day be a day of guilt. There is no such thing as a perfect mother – whether your own or yourself. We women are WAY too adept at focusing on all the things that didn’t get done, instead of celebrating the things that did. So what if the meal lacked that gourmet flair? The kids didn’t starve. That’s good enough.
It’s okay to celebrate the sacrifices inherent in motherhood and the efforts we continue to make.