Mother’s day was Sunday. I started asking mothers of all ages with children of all ages: what did they really want for mother’s day this year? There was an array of answers.
Of course there were a significant number of mothers that mentioned actual physical gifts. That sure makes it easy for other members of the family. I heard requests for a day at a spa, a necklace with my children’s names and birthdays, gift cards, to a day away by themselves.
One mother told me that she loved receiving a tree or a plant. She said “I don’t want the rose, I want the rose bush.” She told how a couple of years ago her husband gave her an orange tree. She said that when it produced fruit she was reminded of how sweet her husband is. When she smells the orange blossoms she is reminded of how their love fills the air they breathe together.
Many mothers mentioned someone preparing a dinner for them. They looked forward to what their family would prepare or where they would go to eat.
However the overwhelming response from the mothers was spending time with their children. Many of the mothers talked about having all their children together for a dinner or going on an outing together. A mother who has two children, 8 and 6, said her dream day would to take her children to the beach and that they would not fight at all that day. She dreamed of having a day of peace with her children. One of the mothers said she would love to have dinner and feel the peace of being together. She would love to hear her family reminisce childhood memories. Peace was definitely a recurring theme.
A couple of mothers mentioned that they would love to receive a letter from their children. Several said a phone call because their children live far away. Being remembered and hearing how much you are cherished is something every mother wants.
Many of the mothers reflected on the best gift they could ever receive is knowing that their children are thoughtful and considerate.
To mother is to nurture. One doesn’t have to physically deliver a child to be a mother. Some ladies said to me that they have many mothers. They were referring to all the women in their lives that helped form them into the people they had become.
To all women who have nurtured, guided, disciplined, taught and loved a child: I hope they had the day they dreamed about.
Katie Powers, R.N., is a board-certified lactation consultant and perinatal educator at Manatee Memorial Hospital’s Family BirthPlace. Her column appears every other week in Family & Friends. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.