|My Mom, Cathy Berta|
“All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.” —Abraham Lincoln
Today is Mother's Day. Happy, happy mother's day to all the moms out there. The photo above is of my mom, Catherine O'Neill Berta. Although she has passed on, her presence is, I am sure, still with me. And not just me, but the legacy that is her grandkids.
I also want to send a special greetings to my wife, Dawn. She is both a fantastic mom but a working mom who is building a business helping people get well. I love her and am proud of her.
Today, across America, moms will be treated to meals, gifts, cards, (I hear the homemade ones with misspelled words in crayon are still in style :)) and even for one lucky chiropractor, a super-clean car, inside and out, thank you very much. All of these are well-deserved. To all the moms out there, thanks and enjoy your day.
I case you're wondering about the history of Mother's Day, let's check in with our good friends a Wikipedia:
"The modern American holiday of Mother's Day was first celebrated in 1908, when Anna Jarvis held a memorial for her mother in Grafton, West Virginia. Her campaign to make "Mother's Day" a recognized holiday in the United States began in 1905, the year her beloved mother, Ann Reeves Jarvis, died. Anna’s mission was to honor her own mother by continuing work she had started and to set aside a day to honor mothers, "the person who has done more for you than anyone in the world." Anna's mother, Ann Jarvis, was a peace activist who had cared for wounded soldiers on both sides of the Civil War and created Mother’s Day Work Clubs to address public health issues.
Due to the campaign efforts of Anna Jarvis, several states officially recognized Mother's Day, the first in 1910 being West Virginia, Jarvis’ home state. In 1914 Woodrow Wilson signed the proclamation creating Mother’s Day, the second Sunday in May, as a national holiday to honor mothers. In a thank-you note to Wilson, Jarvis wrote of a “great Home Day of our country for sons and daughters to honor their mothers and fathers and homes in a way that will perpetuate family ties and give emphasis to true home life.” "
Now for some moms, today will be less than festive day. Some moms are away from home serving our nation in harms' way. I strongly suspect that there is a mom who is in basic training and will not see her kid(s) today. It breaks her heart that she cannot be with her kids. However, she made a choice- a bargain. I'll go serve my country and be away from my kids. In return, I will earn those tangible things (salary, housing health-care) that will give my kids a better life. I will also be able to give my kids something intangible yet just as valuable: pride and accomplishment. To those moms, I salute you.
There are other moms out there who are working today. They are the ones that are pushing a cart down a hotel hallway loaded with towels and sheets. They are taking orders at the restaurants I mentioned above instead of being served. They are leaning over some other dying mom, giving both care and dignity. The mom who is a nurse will get home long after "Mother's Day" is over.
As I think of these moms, the Donna Summer song, She works hard for the money, comes to mind. In fact, let's swing by YouTube (sharing is authorized, so says the page):
I hate to pull you away from this catchy tune in your head, but this blog would not be complete with a nod to the straight-up courage of moms. A few years back there was a horrific attack on a mall in Nairobi, Kenya. Here's a description of the photo below:
"In 2014, photographer Tyler Hicks won a Pulitzer Prize for taking this photograph of a woman protecting her kids during the 2013 terrorist attack on the Westgate Mall in Kenya. More than 65 people were killed, but the mother and her two children stayed alive, laying still for five hours. Music was playing in the mall's speakers, so the mom kept her kids calm by singing to them throughout the attack."
|http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2014/04/24/hicks-pulitzer-01_custom-8632210516047fe7d22474e13db69f03f1ad952a-s40-c85.jpg, public domain/fair use claimed|
In case you're wondering, I'm pretty sure the little objects on the left of the photo...are shell casings.
Here's a link to this story and other moms of acclaim. Of course, I'd argue that this list is but a tiny fraction of moms who should be honored.
So Happy Mother's Day again. Ladies, enjoy your day, you've earned it. And guys, if you're grilling out, let's also remember to do the dishes as well.
Be well my friends,