There will be thousands of words written today celebrating mothers. I thought I would contribute 500 or so.
I’m extremely fortunate that my mom is still around. Now that I’ve moved back to West Virginia, she’s close by, too. I say this even though I know I don’t see her or talk to her as often as I should. I have several friends who are without their mothers today and I know that’s difficult.
Probably the best thing about having my mom close is having her around to pass along things to my daughters. It was fun watching them plant flowers in her yard yesterday. It only took a few minutes, but they all had fun and laughed. I’m sure it will be a memory they will all cherish. Maybe not actively, but somewhere in the back of their minds the girls will remember how to plant flowers from that brief lesson. I’m sure that’s how I learned to do a lot of things.
It’s also fun knowing that Mother’s Day came from West Virginia. Anna Jarvis from Grafton founded Mother’s Day as a memorial to her own mother. The first Mother’s Day was held at Andrews Methodist Episcopal Church in Grafton in 1908. Anna had moved to Philadelphia, but she planned the event in West Virginia and sent a telegram outlining the purpose of the day.
“This day is intended that we may make new resolutions for a more active thought to our dear mothers. By words, gifts, acts of affection, and in every way possible, give her pleasure, and make her heart glad every day, and constantly keep in memory Mothers Day; when you made this resolution, lest you forget and neglect your dear mother, if absent from home write her often, tell her of a few of her noble good qualities and how you love her.”
The first Mother’s Day proclamation on a state level was from the Governor of West Virginia in 1910. It was proclaimed a national holiday in 1914. Anna pushed and prodded and worked to create a day for her own mother. Ironically, she wasn’t a mother herself, but her mother planted the seed in her mind that mothers everywhere should have a memorial. And she also planted the seed in Anna that helped Anna believe she could make it happen. Remember, this was before women could vote, but Anna believed in herself enough, and in her cause enough, that she kept working and pushing.
In my mind, that’s what mothers do best. They plant seeds in their children’s minds that they can do whatever they set their mind toward accomplishing…after they have passed along the tools and skills they will need to make it happen, of course.
I’m not finished on my journey, or even remotely content, but I do know that I wouldn’t be where I am today, nor would I have accomplished one-tenth of what I have so far, if it weren’t for the love, support and encouragement of my mom.
So, I’ll take this moment to say thanks. Thank you mom for always being behind me, even if you weren’t always sure where I was headed. (Honestly, I didn’t know half the time either…) You planted the seeds in me that made me who I am today. And that made all the difference..