Everybody has a mother (or at least someone in their life that acts like a mother). Mothers usually have one main goal: to make sure that their children are safe, healthy, and happy. They are with them through thick and thin, always providing them with a shoulder to lean on in times of sadness and a smile to share with them in times of joy.
This is why Mother’s Day is celebrated on the second Sunday of May – to honor the maternal figures in our life. Mother’s Day is the day to show appreciation to the maternal figure in your life. Take her out to dinner, give her a call and actually listen to her talk, or write her a sweet, personal card.
How Mother’s Day Is Celebrated
Mother’s Day is celebrated around the world. Even though everyone has their own ideas of how to celebrate in the United States, the traditions and festivities differ from one country to the next. For example, in Thailand, Mother’s Day is celebrated in August because that is the day the current queen, Sirikit, was born.
In Ethiopia, families have special celebratory songs that they get together to sing and perform. They also enjoy huge feasts over multiple days; this three-day festival is known as Antrosht. In Japan, the holiday is on the second Sunday in May, and people will buy their mothers red carnations to wear as badges of honor.
Mother’s Day is a huge holiday in Mexico, and it takes place on May 10. Just like here in the United States, families will take women and mothers out to eat at their favorite restaurants. Once out, the mothers will be serenaded with mariachi bands!
Here in the United States, the celebrations vary because we are a huge melting pot of different cultures. Mother’s Day is usually celebrated by people presenting women and mothers with different gifts, ranging from flowers, to birthday cards, to trips, and more. People will also celebrate by taking their mothers out to nice dinners, doing work for their mothers, or doing some sort of activity together.
A History Of Mother’s Day
The idea of Mother’s Day, as well as the general idea of motherhood, can be traced all the way back to ancient times when the Greek and Roman people held massive festivals to celebrate Rhea and Cybele, the central female goddesses of that time. Though they weren’t celebrating their physical mothers, the celebration introduced the idea that mothers were there to provide nurturing and protection.
Ancient Egyptians also believed in the idea of motherhood, celebrating the goddess Isis, their representation of the perfect mother and wife. This celebration took place annually with massive festivals all over the country.
The first known Mother’s Day that celebrated actual mothers was known as “Mothering Sunday.” This was a Christian holiday and festival that was celebrated in the United Kingdom, as well as other Christian parts of Europe. Every fourth Sunday, which was also Lent, was the day where faithful Christians would travel to the local church around their home, also known as their “Mother Church”. There they would have a special Christian service to commemorate motherhood.
It wasn’t for many years that the idea of Mother’s Day would become a secular one. Slowly but surely, it was starting to be seen as a simple way to do nice things for your mother, such as giving her flowers or other gifts. It wasn’t until the early part of the 20th century that the idea of Mothering Sunday faded out and Mother’s Day as we know it began.
We can thank a woman named Anna Jarvis for creating the official holiday. As the daughter of Julia Ward Howe, prominent abolitionist and the writer of the 1870 “Mother’s Day Proclamation,” Jarvis wanted a holiday to celebrate the power and sacrifices of mothers everywhere. In 1908, she organized the very first Mother’s Day celebration in Grafton, West Virginia, using money that she had raised with a Philadelphia store owner by the name of John Wanamaker.
Though Jarvis originally wanted the holiday to be between mothers and the rest of their families, it soon swept the nation and became a capitalist movement. Soon, greeting card companies, floral companies, and other big industries were looking to make money off of the day. Still, the true meaning of Mother’s Day lies in honoring the brave, strong, and selfless women who raise their children with love and protection by any means possible.
Fun fact: Mother’s Day the day chosen by Coretta Scott King to host an underprivileged support March in 1968. It was one of the biggest political causes to have ever been associated with the holiday.
How To Celebrate Mother’s Day
If you’re looking to celebrate Mother’s Day this year, be sure to start planning early, so you can make her day very special. Of course, it doesn’t have to be anything grandiose, but it should be genuine and from the heart.
Start by making your mother a card! Take time doing this and think about what you want to say before you write. Put love and care into it (bonus points if you make the card yourself!). You can also give your mother a gift as well. Things like flowers, chocolates, and gift cards tend to be the most popular items. Think about what she loves the most, and see if you can find it or something that portrays it.
Things like photo collages, personalized music CDs, or homemade dinners are very personal, perfect for showing your mother how much you care! Whatever you end up doing, make sure that your mother feels joyous today because it is her day, and she deserves the world!
Make sure to hashtag #HappyMothersDay to let everyone know how wonderful your mother is!
Reflecting Your Mother’s Love
Mothers form a bond with their children before they are ever born that lasts a lifetime. It is often said that a mother’s love is truly unconditional love – the strongest form of love that you rarely get to experience. So, on your mom’s special day, the best gift to give her is your time. Listen for 5 more minutes. Hug for 10 more seconds. Eat dessert before you leave. She’ll appreciate it more than you know.
“Mama was my greatest teacher, a teacher of compassion, love and fearlessness. If love is sweet as a flower, then my mother is that sweet flower of love.”
- Stevie Wonder