Poetry - Shifting Mother's Day

Photo by Joseph Pérez on Unsplash

Shifting Mother's Day

My memories of my mother
From a very young age 
Are of a busy woman.

She was a minister's wife.
Looked at as unpaid labor.
Part of a package deal.

We all felt part of the package,
My brothers and I.
Pressured to be something expected.

I just couldn't.....

So my relationship with her
Was rocky and strained.
Who I was caused her shame. 

And I guess from my side
Who she was caused me shame.
I wanted the dream mother. 

But times were different
Back in those years.
Our roles were small and confining. 

We were appendages....

It took my dad dying.
It took me becoming a mom.
It took years to find each other.

As mothers we connected
We healed what we could
And accepted the lasting scars.

Our relationship would never be
What I saw in the movies.
What I read in social media posts.

But it was still a connection....

As my kids have grown
And moved away
Mother's day is again a challenge.

If my family can't gather,
If we aren't in the same room,
Then what meaning does the day have?

A conundrum I still haven't solved.

But some don't have mothers
In fact my husbands and mine
Have both passed away.

And for others
For many reasons
Mother's Day is triggering

It brings them sadness
It brings them longing.
For what they never had.

What could this day offer?

Over the years I decided
To embrace a wider definition.
Of who to celebrate this day.

I have shifted my view
To include a new group
Those who nourish our souls.

Today I celebrate those that offer me hope,
Lift me up and hold me close.
And care for family far away.

Happy Mother's Day to all who nurture!