A Good time to pause and honour mothers
May 10, 2024

A Good time to pause and honour mothers

Families in many countries- sons, daughters and offspring, will on Sunday in a multiplicity of ways pay homage and honour the matrons or, where no longer alive, the memory of them, on a day affectionately called Mother’s Day.

What is now a tradition, at least in the western hemisphere, started in the USA 116 years ago from the efforts of a certain Anna Jarvis who held a memorial service to honour the dedication of her mother towards humanitarian service. A campaign to make this a national effort was waged so successfully that US President, Woodrow Wilson, eventually consented to it in 1914.

On the other side of the Atlantic, though the dates differed; there were similar efforts to honour mothers for their selfless contribution and sacrifice. In the United Kingdom for instance these were associated with the Christian tradition and manifested in what was called Mothering Sunday, three weeks before Easter. Other parts of Europe had their own celebrations, but they shared the same purpose.

Although the day is not an international holiday it is nevertheless almost universally celebrated. It amounts to tributes to the selfless contributions and sacrifices of the indispensable element in human life -the mother.

Without her endurance during pregnancy, the pains of birth and the sacrifice in rearing her children while shouldering the burden of keeping the family together, there could be no human life as we know it. In addition, the role of mothers, at least genuine ones, is manifested in their wider contribution in helping to nurture other children in the society and being the bedrock on which the family and society are based. One can never fully calculate the value of this priceless benefaction to human development.

It is even more incalculable when one considers the role that millions of women are forced to play in rearing children without fathers, having to take on dual roles without any social or societal contribution. Too many women must forgo personal ambitions or opportunities for self-advancement to put their children’s interests first.

Many are not even thanked or appreciated for it. Some even end up mothering fruits of their husband/partner’s profligacy, treating these children as their own.

Not all women go that far, and many women today neglect their duties leaving some fathers to get a practical realization of what it means to be a single parent, as well as forcing the state to take on such responsibilities. But if truth be told, these examples pale in significance to the reality confronting our women.

It is therefore as good a time as any to honour the contribution of this segment of human society, its bedrock. Not just our own mothers, but also all mothers, as well as to show concern and take an interest in our young mothers. No praise is too high, no reward too great. Let us do it on Mother’s Day.