May 13, 2012 is the date of Mother’s Day this year. It is celebrated on the second Sunday in May each year. Mother’s Day in the United States differs from other countries in some ways. In the truest sense, it is a day to honor the sacrifice and devotion we received from our mothers. One day a year is set aside to give thanks to the woman who nurtured us, scolded us, sat with us when we were sick, read us bedtime stories, brushed our hair, made sure we brushed our teeth, and on and on and on. Most of all, we remember how much she loved us. In our lives, through the good and bad, that love was the constant force that kept us together and made us feel safe. In the United States, Mother’s Day has become almost as big as Christmas, as far as retailers are concerned. We remember our mothers with gifts of candy, flowers, jewelry or some other gesture of appreciation. We call on the phone to tell her we love her. The phone lines are busy all day on Mother’s Day. In times past, we mailed cards to our mothers on their special day. Now, we send an electronic card. When families weren’t scattered all over the world and lived close, we planned a special meal to share with our mom. The entire family would gather for her day and hugs would be passed around. Now, a phone call has to take the place of that tradition. But Moms are appreciative for any and all small and large gestures from their children. Cherish your mom while you have her. You will surely miss her when she is gone.
While most of South America, like the United States, celebrates Dia de la Madre (Day of the Mother) in May, Argentina celebrates this special day the third Sunday in October. This year it will be celebrated on October 21st. Since the seasons are opposite from the Northern Hemisphere, this makes sense to me. Mother’s Day is a spring celebration, right? Mothers in Argentina are honored with dinners, prepared by their husbands, poems and handmade cards. Mothers are encouraged to relax and enjoy the attention of their children while the fathers clean, cook and tend to the younger children in the house. Mothers are given gifts of candy, flowers and jewelry, much like the states, but the best gift is the devotion they are shown by the family and the true celebration of their special place of honor in the home. And there is almost always a Mother’s Day surprise, one of which is the gathering the mothers together for a special reading of poems by the children. Once the poems are read to the mothers, the doors are opened and the grandmothers enter and the celebration begins. Families in Argentina are not as scattered as in the United States yet, but that is changing.
No matter where you live, remember your mom on her special day. If she is still with you, make sure she knows how much she means to you. If she has passed on, think of her and remember the wonderful ways in which she was special. More than anything, she wants the special gift of your love. Make sure she has that.