Alternative Mother’s Day

Twenty-five billion dollars spent on cards, flowers, jewelry, dinners, spa days and other gifts for Mother’s Day.

Let me say that I do not begrudge any mother who was celebrated with gifts, but that staggering figure made me wonder if we might be ready for an alternative Mother’s Day.

My Alternative Mother’s Day might offer suggestions on how to honor all moms all year. It might begin with asking a simple question: Who are the moms I know? To be honest, don’t advertisers have an homogenized white, suburban, middle class, super mom in mind?

What about mothers who have had abortions? Might we step back and give them the benefit of the doubt? Might we admit that we have no idea what let them to this painful decision? Might we ask God to just hug them? Could we hug them?

There are mothers who stood at the border while their children were taken from them. Might we educate ourselves just a little to find out why mothers brought children on such a dangerous journey?

Moms in prison, for the most part, are not hardened criminals. What would it take for any of us to visit moms in prison?

Moms in hijabs? Mothers who can only support their children by prostitution? Single mothers? Homeless moms?

There are women who want to be mothers but are unable to conceive and biological mothers but don’t want to be mothers.

Then there are women who are not biological moms but have given their very lives to be mothers to many, many children. Right now I’m thinking of all the sisters at St. Ben’s who mothered me through different stages of my life.

There are many kinds of mothers. Who would you include in an Alternate Mother’s Day? What kind of honoring would make sense?

Pat Pickett, OblSB