The Times West Virginian

May 12, 2013

Each and every day should be Mother’s Day

Times West Virginian

— Anna Jarvis, from our neighboring city of Grafton, began the tradition that on the second Sunday of May, mothers and motherhood would receive a national celebration and recognition.

From those early local beginnings, Mother’s Day has evolved and become one of the most celebrated days of the year.

Florists, bakeries and restaurants are flooded with business as we endeavor to show our love, respect and gratitude for our mothers.

Those who have been children, and that includes all of us, can honestly announce that Mama was usually captain of the ship called home. In most situations of childhood and youthful distress, she was used as the “Daddy softener.” It was much easier to ask mom to ask dad than to muster up the nerve to do so ourselves.

The current enlightened announcement that “we” are pregnant always brings a chuckle. “We are expecting” is more realistic.

If this were an equally shared physical endeavor, there would not be many sounds of little pattering feet. Our part as fathers, in the bank of life, is to initiate the initial interest-bearing deposit, and for nine months the account grows and approaches the point of birth. At the event of birth, a lifetime mortgage of love and care is begun, and payment is dutifully daily rendered.

These payments are dutifully made without any maturation date and continue until the parental team passes from life. But in reality, the mother of this team effort, in most cases, carries far more than her share of the loads of life.

The night shift is usually hers as she soothes a fearful child having a bad dream or walks the floor with a fevered baby until dawn arrives. She is the one who is turned to when knees are cut, feelings hurt, hearts broken (at all ages), problems arise in college or marriages — and the list goes on. Mama is the rock of this cherished place called home.

Although we men do not like to admit it, wives are sometimes called upon to mother us. How often has she soothed an ego bruise, instant frustration, spot judgment or childish outburst? The words of encouragement, “You can do it, honey,” take on new meaning when whispered in a depressed husband’s ear. The wisdom she has accrued over her years of supervising a home becomes an earned virtue of great value.

These ladies called mothers who are fondly loved and respected are beyond any adequate identification or definition. Without them, none of us would be here. But with them, we have been tutored, trained, made to feel important and needed, and have received an unexplainable sense of belonging and reassurance.

Happy Mother’s Day to all our mothers. We celebrate you on this special day, but we constantly and daily thank you. To us who are your children, there is no other name that can compare in meaning, respect and devotion. To us who are your husbands, we must admit that we would surely fail without your love and support.

— Elton Slusser