For many moms, the second Sunday in May is a day to be recognized for all that they do for their families. Mother’s Day is the holiday of extreme variances; for some, it’s a day of family celebrations, for others, a day of high expectations deflated by disappointments.
Mother’s Day was once designed to be a way to honour mothers but has since become a commercialized, Hallmark holiday. The thought of Mother’s Day conjures up visions of breakfast in bed, packed restaurants with loud families, and expensive gifts. And expensive it is; Canadians will spend an average of $76 on gifts and up to $184 to give their mom a lovely Mother’s Day.
Canadians will buy dinner, flowers, or candy and chocolate – and moms will end up posting their adorable children’s hand-made cards on Facebook to prove how loved and cherished they are by their families.
But is it what moms really want? Why must we add such pressure to have THE perfect Mother’s Day?
Mother’s Day is Every Day
Most women simply would love to have worked as a mother be recognized, appreciated and honoured not just on one single day, but every day.
While we might wish to wake up on Mother’s Day and not lift a finger, the reality is it’s not always possible. Yes, your children and partner can ensure that your day is pleasant, and make you a delicious breakfast or dinner. But mom may not be able to avoid changing a diaper, folding a load of laundry, or making kids’ lunches. Nor can she – or would she – want to avoid wiping a child’s tear, or giving a big mama bear hug on Mother’s Day. What moms really want is their children to love, respect, and listen to them every day.
Moms Need Self-care Not Just On One Day
The average stay-at-home mom works 92 hours a week. That includes 14 hours of cooking and over six hours of laundry per week. If she could collect a salary, mom would earn $143,102 per year (see below).
According to Salary.com, working moms put in 59 hours’ worth of household and childcare jobs a week on top of their 40-hour work week. If she collected a paycheck for her work at home, she would earn $90,223 per year (see below).
It’s absolutely crucial for moms to make time for self-care weekly, if not daily. Whether it’s a bubble bath, yoga class, book club, spa day, or girls’ night out, moms need to make doing something fun a regular habit. Once a year is not going to cut it!
Celebrate the Other Moms Too
There are other moms in the family to consider too; your own mom, your partner’s mom, maybe a stepmom. How do you celebrate with everyone and still have a special day yourself? Whether it’s dropping by to visit your own mothers, or all getting together in one place, or even a simple phone call to tell her how much you love her, honour every mom in some way.
Whether you are suckered into the Mother’s Day hype or refrain from making Mother’s Day a Hallmark holiday in your household, you can always embrace the “holiday” as another day to be grateful for your family.
Maria Lianos-Carbone is the author of Oh Baby! A Mom’s Self-Care Survival Guide for the First Year, available at Amazon.ca and Chapters-Indigo. She is also the publisher of amotherworld.com, a leading lifestyle blog for women.