Parenting

Here’s to Good Women: Celebrating Yourself

Here’s to good women:
May we know them.
May we be them.
May we raise them
.

Happy Mother’s Day to each and every one of you fine women. As the quote above suggests, it’s not just mothers who raise good women; it’s all the other women in our lives as well. Knowing and being a good woman makes you a role model, and on Mother’s Day, I’d like to salute all women who know and love, raise or mentor young women.

Mother’s Day also gives us pause. I’ve watched over the years as mothers that I know hold their breath to see if their children “remember.” It’s tough. You are supposed to be celebrated, but the waiting is just a killer. At the same time, I know women who don’t have great relationships with their mothers, or who receive guilt trips this time of year from their moms. That’s not good either. What is a woman to do? I have two suggestions for you.

If your children ask you want, tell them

Please don’t say, “I just want a phone call.” Teach your children what to do and how to celebrate you. Make it easy for them to celebrate you with simple purchases or homemade gifts.

When my daughters were little girls, they used to ask me what I wanted for Mother’s Day. I told them anything they made me would be wonderful! When they were teenagers and they would ask me, I told them I would plan the day and they would have to do what I want. I remember one year, we went to the movies, and then cleaned up their clothes off the floor in their rooms. Trust me, during their teenage years, that was a gift.

I know a single parent mom who gave her older kids money and sent them to the local grocery store. She asked them, “Please buy me a card and some candy.” She got what she wanted, and her kids did the right thing. When I was a single parent, I asked a friend to assist my young daughters in finding or making gifts for me, or sometimes a family member helped.

In any event, its important to help your children learn how to give you gifts. Teaching your kids how to buy gifts for you will benefit their future spouse. Teaching your children how to buy gifts for you means they can teach their own children how to do it someday.

Celebrate yourself!

That’s right. You heard me. Stop sitting around or waiting or feeling sad because you may not be recognized. Go out there and plan your day. If you feel that your children aren’t enthusiastic enough, go out and gift yourself. You aren’t perfect and that’s okay, but you are doing the best that you can. And that is good enough. You deserve a celebration.

A special note to stepmoms: You often fall through the cracks on Mother’s Day, but you play an important supporting role in your stepchildren’s lives. I don’t ask or expect gifts from my stepchildren, but I make sure to acknowledge to myself that I’ve done a good job. You can too.

Some of you may feel I am stepping on some important mother toes here by not encouraging the time honored tradition of mother’s who sweat it out, but that’s okay. It takes all kinds of mothers to make the world go round.

A toast in your honor for Mother’s Day! Here’s to you!

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