A Different Kind of Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day has always been a touchier subject for me. For those of you that know me, my mother has never really been a part of my life. You may also know that I have absolutely zero interest in her having any part in it in any capacity. That fact won’t change.

Every year when Mother’s Day rolls around, a small part of me cringes in the worst way. Mother’s Day is supposed to be about celebrating your mother. It’s about the respect and adoration owed to a mother for her sacrifices, her love, and everything we’ve put her through; physically, mentally, psychologically, intellectually, and more. It’s a day for mothers. Ironically, it’s the one day she can stop being a mother and just accept all of the acclaim.

This begs the question of what does the day mean to a motherless child? It’s a selfish question because the day isn’t about the children. Mothers around the world should be respected and appreciated in the most tremendous of ways. Yet I have always wondered what the day means to a child that doesn’t technically have a mother.

What is a mother? I was doing a little research a few days ago and saw that the definition of mother in the verb tense is, “give birth to.” However, that particular definition is now considered antiquated. Officially, the definition of a mother is a noun and means, “a woman in relation to her child or children.”

Unfortunately, I find the official definition of the word to be ambiguous. For instance: A woman’s relation to her children. Does this mean that a woman has to directly give birth to a child, thus making it her child? Does it mean that a woman can adopt a child, ergo the child is now hers for mothering?

For me, a mother is any woman that shows any kind of care and affection for a child. That is an understandably broad definition that doesn’t hold any true value or substance. Personally, I believe that the value of motherhood is not narrow enough to solely be defined as giving birth and subsequently caring for the child.

A mother can be a variety of things.

My father’s mother is a mother. She is not my direct mother, but she gave birth to my father, and my father biologically conceived me. Given that my mother was not in my life, my grandmother cared for me just as a mother would. Again, we are stuck with a broad definition of the kind of care she provided, but that kind of rhetoric is too complex to discuss in a single blog post.

The woman provided me with more love and care than my own mother, thus I will go out of my way to honor her on Mother’s Day.

My mother’s step-mom, Grandma Rush, is not my biological grandmother. However, when I grew up, that woman showed me as much love as humanly possible, and she wasn’t even related to me via blood. Kathy Rush is a wonderful woman that deserves all of the love in the world.

I will go out of my way to honor her on Mother’s Day.

My best friend, Greg Stevenson, has five brothers. Greg and his brothers absolutely adore, love, respect, and even playfully fear their mother. I have spent many hours with his mother, and I love her like she was my own. I haven’t spoken to her in many years, but she will always be an important part of my life.

I will go out of my way to honor her on Mother’s Day.

The love of my life is a mother to a beautiful six-year-old daughter. We are engaged and currently trying to move our lives forward as we form and plan out a future family and home. I strongly hope that she will be the mother of my children someday. Every day, I sit by and watch her be a strong, patient, caring, and loving mother to her child. Her daughter will grow up to be an amazing, respectful woman because of the love that Emily provides for her every day. She is not my mother, but she is an amazing mother nonetheless.

I will go out of my way to honor her on Mother’s Day.

Selfishness is a major problem in my life, even if it’s not an exterior noticeable quality that I display on a daily basis. It is selfish of me to ask what Mother’s Day means to me. I am not a mother. I do not have a direct mother, but there are so many other mothers in my life; some directly, others indirectly.

This is for all of the mothers out there during this time of major uncertainty. While we should love, respect, and adore our mothers every single day, it is important to take one day out of a year and honor all of them with the utmost care.

Hold strong, mothers. We all love you.

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