Mother's Day - Bah! Humbug!

Let me say right at the beginning that you may not  agree with me on this one....and you MAY not even  LIKE me after you've read this.  I'll risk it to express how I really feel this morning (and how I've honestly felt about Mother's Day ever since I became a mother).

On Tuesday I visited my mother and dad.  I took Mother with me to pick out a hanging basket for their front porch - a "Mother's Day" present from me.  I love my mother and am thankful she is still a living part of my life. I have yet to find a gift that would adequately express my appreciation.

Motherhood is responsible for some of the happiest and most humbling experiences of my lifetime. I love each of my three children and thank God for their unique and special personalities. I am proud of them and thankful that each of them shares my faith and love for Jesus Christ.  It is true that none of them will spend today with me.  So you might say, "Your post displays a 'sour grapes' attitude."  But this has been my attitude for almost 38 years!  Here are a just a few of my reasons for my Mother's Day Blues (I don't have a lot of time--too many Mother's Day loose ends to tie up for our church service this morning):
  • One shouldn't need a holiday to express love and honor to his or her mother.
  • The commercialization of the holiday bothers me greatly.
  • I don't like commercials telling my children that pajama-grams, teddy bears or flowers in a free vase are going to make my day.
  • Mother's Day cards for ones aunt, friend, grandmother, sister-in-law and pet seem ridiculous to me.
  • My husband is not my son, so a card from him on Mother's Day is really unnecessary (I know.  I'm such a rebel!)  But seriously, he treats me with respect and love EVERY day of the year, and I feel cherished.
  • Motherhood is its own reward.  There are intrinsic joys that surpass sentiments on any card I've ever received.
  • Any holiday that produces pressure, guilt, last-minute and hasty spending should be re-evaluated.

I know this is sort of sketchy but when God commanded us to "honor our fathers and our mothers", I don't think He had this holiday in mind.

However, lest anyone misunderstand, we WILL honor mothers in our church service this morning (my husband is pastor, so I know what's "up").  Mothers selected their favorite hymns to be sung.  We have a treat to pass out to each mother in attendance.  We will view a great video, have a clever presentation by the teens, and hear a special sermon applicable to the day. 

I DO appreciate my mother.  Today and everyday, I thank God for her.  I want to make EVERY day a Mother's Day for her by following her example of faith, faithfulness, and love.

Have I rambled?


  1. I like your statement "mother hood is my reward." I feel the same way but I do cherish a call or visit and I have a few cherished mothers day cards from my children when they were little that are priceless to me. I do not like the that family's feel they have to buy flowers or a gift. I love a good old fashioned from the heart hug!

  2. I understand completely where you're coming from. I told my husband yesterday that I've come to dislike most holidays where something is expected out of someone else...Valentine's Day, for instance. I totally agree with you that we should love, respect, honor...every day...not just a day for the retail industry to make lots of money!!! Thanks for sharing your honest thoughts!

  3. No, you haven't rambled. I see your point.
    But, I happen to love Mother's Day. It was
    always so special for me because I loved
    my mother so much. It was a day to just
    celebrate her. I bought her gifts all the
    time, not just one particular day. My son,
    Seth,enjoys getting gifts for me on this
    day and taking me for a treat somewhere.
    It's just a sweet special day. But I know
    I am cherished every day of the year.

    Hope your day is as special as you are!

  4. Deb & Dee, Thanks for not "ripping into me" and for understanding and accepting my heart.

  5. Sandy, I see YOUR point too. Very well expressed. Enjoy every minute of your special day, hon! (You, too, Deb & Dee).

  6. It can be profitable to read the under-side of life. Everything isn't always rosey, or even reason to celebrate. For some, Mother's Day is a grim & hurtful reminder of a cruel or absent mother.

    To some extent I feel as you do. It doesn't stop with Mother's Day, though. It spans Christmas and Easter, 4th of July, and other markers - as if any of us could capture God's richest gifts in a mere 24 hour period!

    Even so, I face this day and all the others with such great gratitude. In every holiday I am reminded of God's incredible love & grace, as well as the bounty of blessings He's crafted in this world.

    Blessings to you & yours,

  7. I totally understand, and agree. Our Mother's should be honored everyday.

  8. I pretty much agree with you, Rebecca. But I still wanted to honor mother's who perhaps have lost a child, or even those who have wanted to be a mother but for some reason could not. I was not raised by my mother ~ my dearest sweet Grandmother raised me and my two cousins. THAT is true love. I mostly wanted to honor her memory.

    Having worked for Hallmark, I know that every holiday can be turned into a *Hallmark* holiday. But, for me, holidays are what you make them!

    I did have to chuckle at your *Motherhood is it's own reward.* That sounds like me, telling my (then) youngest daughter why I didn't give out "allowances" for good grades on report cards. Now, working on her Ph.D. she still reminds me that I used to say, "A good grade is it's own reward." ;~P

    Well, now I am the one rambling! Sorry! Hope this didn't sound like I was "ripping into you."
    I, too, think we should honor Mother's every day with our thoughts, words and actions and how we raise our own children as a tribute to mothers.

    Thank you for being willing to share your feelings and for you visit with me today.

  9. I hate the commercialization of ALL people and things, especially Christmas. But to tell you the truth, I love Mother's Day, and not because I am a mother and want accolades, gifts, cards, etc. from my children/grandchildren. I love thinking of the day more in terms of my own mother, and the women in my life who have all 'mothered' me, and also thinking of the Blessed Mother. I know they should be loved and honored everyday, and I think I do that (although I know there are many days I fall short), but I love, love, love the idea of a special day reserved just for them and just for the idea of 'motherhood' which I think society as a whole puts on the back burner and considers it very little.
    But I do agree with you that motherhood is it's own reward. I have no need of cards and gifts on this day (I do appreciate the extra effort my children make though, I don't want to be rude here), and I feel the same about my birthday, and I feel the same about my Anniversary. My husband loves and cherishes me every day of our marriage, I don't need anything 'special' on our special day other than to spend time with him.
    It's just another day. Just another wonderful gift among the many God has bestowed on my life.
    God Bless you today and always,

  10. Thank you for your post...I think you and I may be made from the same mold regarding the commercialization of holidays. If we can't show our beloved ones our love on any other day than the "designated" day, there's something seriously wrong with the relationship. Just like people who send flowers to the funeral home or go to the calling...if you can't send flowers to me while I'm on this earth, don't bother sending them when I've gone home to my Savior, and don't come visiting when I can't enjoy your company.

    Motherhood is indeed, its own reward. Well spoken, as always.

  11. I totally agree with every thought you had Rebecca. I don't like my children feeling any guilt or obligation to tell me they love me. I know they love me and appreciate me.
    I have to tell you though Rebecca as you know how Katie can be with the teenattitude. I meant that to be one word BTW. She has been so sweet all day today, not one complaint. I even got a hug and a kiss! Amazing! LOL! Love Di ♥

  12. Like any holiday or celebration, it's what you make of it. I remember being a child and loving to make gifts or cards for my mother on Mother's Day...I saw that same joy in Alivia, picking wild flowers for her mom today. My mother use to say, If you can't give me flowers when I'm alive, don't send them to my funeral! Her way of saying, show me love now!


  13. Wow that is a tough and bold post. I remember hearing my mother say that she did not like Mother’s Day because Proverbs 31 was always read and reminder to her of how short she fell of being a good mother. I agree. I feel uncomfortable with that chapter for the same reason.

    I must admit that I do like Mother’s Day. I love the sweet stories that I hear that might otherwise go untold. Usually I am challenged to do a better job and I am full of praise for my heritage.

    I like hearing from my sons. My sons articulate nice things about me either by calling or in a card. I know this is terrible but twice a year (also on my birthday) it feels kind of nice—even if they come out of obligation. My first husband died 22 years ago. After that I especially liked it when school teachers and Sunday School teachers encouraged my sons to make the day special for me. It was sweet. I think they felt good about making my day nice. Being a mother was the desire of my heart from my first memories. It remains my greatest joy in life—thus far, of course. Yes, yes, I loved/love my husband. But having a child/children was so incredible for me—and for my first husband, too. We shared the love of those years and the camaraderie we had are still precious memories for me.

    My second husband does not believe in Hallmark holidays. He boycotts on those days out of reasons like you stated . . . “I tell you every day that I love you.” “Hallmark does not dictate when and what I should say . . .” Of course that is true. Hubby is affectionate and wonderful about expressing love to me. I agree. He is not my mother and does not and should not give me a card on Mother’s Day.

    My sweet stepdaughters-in-law, always make a sweet effort to let me know that I am loved an appreciated on Mother’s Day. I can’t help it. It is fun—kind of like having two birthdays. I bought dessert for today but did not jump up and do dishes or clear the table. It was nice. I am probably way too self-absorbed.

    I also take pleasure in reminding my mother-in-law that I love her very much. She is incredible. I love to tell her. My sons often call their Grandma on Mother’s Day. It makes me proud of them for remembering.

    And yes, my heart totally goes out to those that desired to be mothers and were not granted that privilege. I recognize that this day sends reminding arrows that are hurtful and painful. Believe it or not, I do try to downplay Mother’s Day as much as possible because of them. I appreciate that our church does not make a big deal of Mother’s Day and gives it small mention—no flowers, no Proverbs 31 (on this day), or special songs or tributes because our church has such a variety of people.

    I am not ripping you. I understand your thoughts and do not heartily disagree with them. Is it okay to agree to disagree just a little?

  14. Rebecca, I agree with so many of your points. Christmas for me is too commercial and we never do anything Eastery [bunnies etc]
    Mother's Day isn't a specific biblical holiday [It is a commandment] and I too honor my own mother dearly always and have four wonderful children that call me blessed everyday.
    I do however cherish the cards my children have always sent to me always with line after line of their own sentiment along with very mushy hallmark lines. Recently I found one from My beloved Jonathan, now with Christ, the last card he ever sent and it means more today then on the day he sent it two years ago, yes he always told me he loved me and I don't think my kids feel guilty at all sending a card in fact I think they all kinda like it. An opportunity to make sure the don't forget. They were not all model children growing up and the card allows them to express receiving unconditional love and how it shaped who they are today, productive giving members of society, and that makes this Mom Overjoyed.
    ps- My Mother's Day was spent in bed with the flu! Love to read your posts. Blessings Meg

  15. I find Mothers Day a sad day for me, since my husband and son passed......all my friends celebrate with their families, at church, again all families and even to go for a cup of coffee on this special day all I see are families....I love this, I am happy for them but this is one day I miss my family.
    Love you and I know you would of enjoyed this special day.......:-)Hugs

  16. My husband's family never made a big deal out of holidays or birthdays from what I can tell...and my family ALWAYS made a big deal. So while I was "conditioned" one way, my reality has been what I've made of it. Mother's Day has not always been a favorite and mostly for many of the reasons you listed. I think I was conditioned to have expectations that just were not going to be met and early on it created disappointment on my part. If you have a look at the post I wrote today, you'll see I've gotten way beyond those days...Yet this morning when I talked to my mom, she was appalled at the way I spent my day yesterday -- she told me she would have been crying on her pillow if she was "treated" this way. I love my mom, I talk to her several times every day and see her several times a week...but our feelings about the day are just different. This year I decided I've been a mother for 30 years now, and all I really wanted was not to be under obligations or pressures. What we did seemed like a good compromise...both moms were happy with the time we spent with them on Sat. night...and I was happy to have a relaxing day! I know my kids love me and not just on the designated day of the year. So I'm pretty much with you, Rebecca!

  17. I would like to give you a hug, Bernie. ((HUG)) And thank you for sharing this. At one time I used to send "thinking of you" cards to those who had lost mothers (or fathers for Father's Day) during the year.

  18. I soooo agree with you! My children tell me they love me everytime we talk. That means more to me than any card or gift. Anytime I speak to my parents, in-laws, or brothers & sister...I tell them that I love them too. Actions speak louder than a card. A card can say I love you, but if you never do more than send a you truly love someone.

  19. my sweet mother in law expressed those same
    thoughts last thursday. i can understand them.

    i wouldn't trade the cards i received from my
    five children for a million dollars, however.
    not for two million! :)

  20. This is such a special post, Rebecca. I agree with your thoughts, and I also agree that Mother's Day has been overly commercialized.

    Honoring parents is not a once a year thing. Yes we know that.

    When I was small, there really was no such thing as a Mother's Day. It is a fairly recent invention, something probably invented by Hallmark.

    But I also love to have a special day for some other reasons, mostly mentioned by others who commented on your post.

    You have a sensitive heart, Rebecca. I truly appreciate having met you on blog world.

    And, I do love that you posted about the bucket of water to flush your toilets. We do that all the time here to save water. It does cut down water bills, considering how often we flush the toilet in a day.

    Love your heart...


  21. "Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates."

    I totally get what you're saying.

    I love my mom! Her birthday is May 9 and often (AHEM, this year!) falls on Mother's Day. I worry that she will be "cheated" because of this. And therefore, I'm often overloaded with pressure (perhaps my own) to pull the day off suitably.

    I love my three daughters. And, YES, I want to be appreciated. Yet, I don't want them struggling through the years with the pressure of finding adequate gifts. Years ago I wrote a paper on Mother's Day for young people--teens, pre-teens. It was part of a writing course I was taking at the time. My focus was to help alleviate the pressure of Mother's Day by suggesting practical ways to bless Mom. I totally forgot about it until I read your post.

    This Mother's Day was my oldest daughter's very first Mother's Day. Her husband is deployed to Iraq. They are both in the National Guard and as newlyweds with a six month old baby boy, they currently live with us. Well, except for that part of my son-in-law currently being in Iraq. ;)

    I knew her Mother's Day would be special as her husband bought her a new wedding ring to replace the temporary one he bought last August for their wedding. I also knew his not being present would weigh on her.

    Add to that a dance recital for my other two daughters (17 and 3. I realize you totally did NOT need to know their age but if you haven't figured it out yet--I AM A DETAILED PERSON! And a comment space hog. Sorry.).

    A dance recital on MOTHER'S DAY! It turns out the date was scheduled or should I say "assigned" last year by our local convention center. I felt so much pressure to at the very least adequately explain this to my family.

    As always, my mother was gracious. Mother's Day and her birthday aside, she and my father met us after church for the recital. Unfortunately, though, my husband and two youngest in the recital were unable to attend our church. ON MOTHER'S DAY! Hair rolling and other preparations--especially for a three-year-old in her very first recital--took up more time than we knew we even had.

    So my daughter and her baby boy prepared to meet her close friend and single mom at church without us. Without her husband. On her very first Mother's Day.

    But you know what? I had prayed that the Lord would order our steps that day. That my mother and daughter would not be overshadowed by the recital. And also that my two youngest daughters would be honored for their hard work.

    And I wasn't stressed. God Almighty was sitting on His throne as always that morning. Faithful as always.

    Not only did we enjoy our time together eating out after the recital, but my seventeen-year-old won this year's Scholarship Queen Award at the recital. Such a blessing for the hard work she put into this year in dance. Not only in her own class but also in her baby sister's class as the assistant to the Instructor.

    I was blessed as always by the cards from my husband and my girls. I "DO" enjoy the cards from my husband. I understand your point that I am NOT his mother. However, as the mother of his child (the youngest) as well as the mother of the two oldest whom he had a large part in raising, it's nice to be honored.

    But again, back to your point--should that not be more than just one day a year?

    I've just realized that I should've followed up with a blog post on this. Then perhaps I wouldn't have taken up so much comment space. :)

    Thank you so much for sharing this! I think I'll stay and visit a while!

    Rena Gunther @


Writing a Song a Week #3

Writing a Song a Week #3
♪ I wait for the Lord; my soul waits and in his word I hope. My soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning ♪ (Psalm 130:5-6)