Mother’s Day is a day of collective celebration wherein we express our admiration to the mothers who transformed us into the people we are today. These mothers are in many forms, some are physically present, and others stand beside us as spirits. Whether that mother is a biological mother, an adoptive mother, or a motherly figure, we can all unite in honoring our mothers.
Notwithstanding our ideological differences, our immutable characteristics, or the path we have followed, each and every human is bonded by the common experience of being conceived by a mother.
Every mother’s responsibility is arduous. At the beginning of a child’s life, a mother must endeavor to raise a child who cannot care for themselves. The effort often expended during these times is great; they cause sleepless nights and constant, 24-hour monitoring. Amazingly, that endeavor is often a first for the mother, and despite this new, difficult call to action, she often rises to the occasion to ensure that her child’s health, safety, and morals are in constant check. As a child grows, the balance shifts, and the once-child who has blossomed into an adult must reciprocate to the parents who raised them and begin to care for them.
As we mature and assume the role of a parent—or see the hardships our friends face while raising children—we often develop a deeper appreciation for what our mothers do for us. After all, what motivates a mother to stay up all night soothing an infant who will have no recollection of what transpired? Why would a mother, despite their child’s wrath or apparent lack of gratitude, rise each morning to be a good parent to that child, providing for and sheltering them? The answer is quite simple: it’s natural.
When a mother looks at a child, a natural instinct to ensure the child’s safety and well-being emerges. This characteristic is so ingrained in so many mothers that it would be more difficult for them to be neglectful or inattentive than it would be to offer their child all the effort they are capable of providing. Mothers are mighty; they are superheroes. When their child is in need, they answer the call no matter the difficulty or stress that it causes them.
I, as many, was blessed with the God-given gift of being raised by a mother who provided me with constant love and admiration—something I always made sure to return. It was clear to me that my mother would sacrifice everything for me and my siblings and that, despite the difficulties that we often presented her with, no challenge was too great to keep her from providing us with the care we needed each and every day.
My twenties were a trying period in my life; I underwent two painful medical procedures that left me bedridden for many days. I was blessed to have a group of friends and colleagues who were willing to support me and assist me in caring for myself in the event of an emergency, but I never needed their assistance. Immediately before and after each procedure, my mother jumped at the opportunity to spend weeks caring for me—I thought I was a baby again. Every month, she would travel from her hometown of Marion, S.C. to Washington, D.C. and stay with me for one to two weeks at a time, showering me with love and compassion every minute of the day, and even when she departed, she stayed in frequent touch with me to monitor my well-being.
Despite the strenuous work required to care for me, she was always patient; she cooked for me, cleaned for me, and made me comfortable. But most importantly, she gave me the best medicine a person could ask for: an assurance that everything would be fine—the bright, warm smile that never fleeted. Her devotion was unwavering, and she provided me with the finest support and care a son could ask for.
Nevertheless, my situation is not uncommon; the sheer amount of love provided by my mother may be distinct in character, but it certainly is not in sum. There is no greater bond than between a mother and a son; this shared experience is one that persists in each mother-son relationship.
Each Mother’s Day comes the sobering knowledge that I will never be able to call or see the woman who shaped me into the man I am today. She is the driving force behind my success, the calming voice that brought me solitude, and the energy that fueled my work. Though my mother is no longer physically here with me, those same forces continue to guide and motivate me to be my absolute best and strive my hardest each and every day to achieve more and more success.
Each mother deserves to be admired. They provide us with worth that no other individual in our lives can. They are deserving of recognition not only on Mother’s Day, but every day.
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