Month: May 2016

Mother’s Day

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A few thoughts about this day.  It does seem that each year honoring Mothers on this day has become more commercial.  Flowers, candy, gift certificates to department stores.  However, children are still making their own cards, and giving those slips of paper with little jobs written on them.  Carry out the trash.  Rake the yard. Sweep out the garage.

A friend of mine does not celebrate the day.  However, she does honor her mother every day by caring for her.  She  pointed me to an article that supports her belief.

Earliest History of Mothers Day
The earliest history of Mothers Day dates back to the ancient annual spring festival the Greeks dedicated to maternal goddesses. The Greeks used the occasion to honor Rhea, wife of Cronus and the mother of many deities of Greek mythology.

Ancient Romans, too, celebrated a spring festival, called Hilaria dedicated to Cybele, a mother goddess. It may be noted that ceremonies in honor of Cybele began some 250 years before Christ was born. The celebration made on the Ides of March by making offerings in the temple of Cybele lasted for three days and included parades, games and masquerades. The celebrations were notorious enough that followers of Cybele were banished from Rome. 

As for myself, for many years I lived away from my Mother and only saw her perhaps once a year on vacation.  I am very happy that I now have the opportunity to live near my daughter, and granddaughters.
Recently I read the new book “Fear of Dying” by Erica Jong. Her first book years ago was “Fear of Flying” which was much more racy with considerable sexy connotations.  Her latest is not..  Nor is it “wildly funny” as the book jacket says.  It is humorous  Nor do I feel it is a novel but more of a moire in disguise. It is the story of Vanessa, a fading sixty year old actress  who is bored and finds herself running between hospitals and nursing homes visiting ailing parents and in-laws.
The one positive quote I discovered in the book was when her hospitalized mother  says to her: “In the end that’s all that matters, is leaving children behind on the earth to replace you when you go,.”    I feel that pretty much sums it up. I did experience one memorable event as a mother that is a little out of the ordinary,  that is that my daughter was born on Mothers Day.  Unfortunately, the hospital where I went in the late afternoon ran out of flowers that they were giving mothers.
Ho Hum.
 Here is a poem about Motherhood that I wrote several years ago.
               MOTHERHOOD    by Frances Altman    May 3, 1991
              One cannot fully express
              Motherhood until you’ve
              Experienced all the trials and duress
              By then you’re speechless.