Your Best Mother’s Day

By Tom Dardick

Mother’s Day is rightfully prominent – Mothers deserve celebration, praise, and appreciation for the sacrifices they make for their children. But, like the Hallmark holidays, does it ever seem a bit commercialized to you? Most people love their mothers; but, does it have to be a profit deal?

Maybe that’s a little cynical. So let me ask you moms – “What you think about Mother’s Day?”  Do you look forward to it? Is your relationship with your children all that you want it to be?

If you have little kids, your answer may be a quick “Yes.”  But, what if you have teenagers or adult children? Do you wish you were closer to them?  Could Mother’s Day be better?

Now, I’m not a mom – but I have one. I’m also married to one and I know many others. I’ve noticed that the transition of their children to adulthood is not easy for a mom. She will always remember her baby – the one who saw her as their entire world. To a mother, the process of a child gaining their independence can feel like the slow (or too rapid) loss of something precious.

And it is.  But each mother is also gaining something. It is then that you gain the opportunity to have the best Mother’s Days. It starts with desiring a successful adult relationship with your children. Look not at what you no longer have.  Instead, look ahead and consider experiences you can have with your adult child which weren’t possible when they were younger. 

Your relationship thrives as you help your child continue to grow. In adulthood, children grow by expanding their circle of concern. They stop focusing on what they personally have or don’t have, and they turn their attention to helping others. It might mean their spouse or, if you’re lucky, your grandchildren. It may mean that they become involved in a church family or their community. Their work may bring them to faraway unknown-to-you places. But, you can help them grow by teaching them to nurture those around them - helping them to be better moms or dads themselves.

Maybe the best way to strengthen your relationship with your children is by continuing to grow yourself. You want respect? Be respectable! This means learning and growing; trying new things – maybe even with them. It could mean standing for something. This helps them continue to see you as a role model.

If you’re like my mom, the best thing you can get on Mother’s Day is family time together. That really is the stuff on which relationships are built – shared experience. If you want to experience your best Mother’s Day, try to get together with an agenda that has some eye toward what your kids would most enjoy. If they’re outdoorsy types – go on a picnic. If they’re movie buffs – watch one together. If they like games, plan to play some together. Do something out of the ordinary.  Something unexpected. This is what makes a day memorable, builds experience, and nourishes relationships.

May every day be your best Mother’s Day!