"Mothers are the necessity of invention."
It's Mother's Day on Sunday. A day dedicated to celebrating your mother, giving her a day off, making her lunch or taking her out.
With the amount of advertising EVERYWHERE, it's pretty hard to miss or not feel tempted to buy or do something for the mum in your life (be it your own mum, spouse's mum or your children's mother).
Making her feel special on Mothering Sunday is what we're supposed to do but
do you think focusing our energy on this extraordinary person just once a year is enough?
The moment I found out I was expecting my first child, my life changed forever. Nothing was going to be the same ever again. It couldn't be taken back and even if the pregnancy hadn't gone through, I still would have remained changed. This much I knew.
Image Credit: 24/7 MOMS
So with the run up to the 'big day', I've been thinking about what motherhood really is and to sum it up I came to the conclusion that it is a sacrifice.
That sounds negative doesn't it?
But it isn't... a sacrifice is basically when you give up something you value for the sake of something else that you regard as much more worthy or important.
The minute a woman gets pregnant she gives up her body, then once the baby arrives; her sleep, her food at times (when she's running around looking after everyone and everything), her time, her peace of mind and in some cases, namely mine... her sanity(!)
A mother makes these smaller sacrifices daily, however, she also gives up a little portion of herself when she decides to have children.
Some mothers have a choice about when they want to start a family, others don't. Whenever that choice is made or not made, a mother always makes a sacrifice.
Some mothers don't start their career or even finish their education before their first child comes along. Others manage to complete their education and perhaps even start their career, only to see it trail off when motherhood begins.
And some (you would think) have it all, because they take the time off work to have children and walk right back in to their careers. But even that mother will be sacrificing something; she will either be putting her children in to 'childcare' when she doesn't want to or will be settling for slower progression at work in order to have some input in her child's daily life.
Even though we have moved forward from the days when a woman's place was in the kitchen and have given women the right to work etc. I'm not sure a mother of young children can ever be 'equal' to a man in terms of her career if she chooses to have children.
She will always have to take time off for maternity leave, 'sick days' when the children are ill, have to start work later or leave earlier because she needs to drop off or pick up her children.
She will always be stressed about fitting in the children, her job, her housework and her extended family in to her daily life. Of course fathers do help out with a lot too, but predominantly it is the mother that deals with these things, hence my focus on them.
"All women become like their mothers. That is their tragedy. No man does. That's his."
Miriam Makeba, an African civil rights activist said; "Girls are the future mothers of our society, and it is important that we focus on their well-being."
We need to ensure that our daughters make the right decisions with regard to their education, careers and future spouses so that they can flourish and in turn their children can flourish.
We need to teach our children today how important it is to respect women, show them how to appreciate the women in their lives, teach our sons to help in the house so that they can also experience and appreciate that a mother's job isn't an easy task and can be difficult.
Let's remind ourselves that women the world over make sacrifices daily, they work hard, they cry, they laugh, they pray and put theirwhole being in to raising their own little people to become who we are today.
They start sacrificing from the minute of conception.
Lastly, given mothers are such awesome pieces of work; that work endlessly day in day out, trying to make ends meet whilst raising their awesome children, I'd like to ask as Milton Berle once asked...
"If evolution really works, how come mothers only have two hands?"
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